*To see previous course encouragements see the Course Content Page.
4 Then Joshua called the twelve men whom he had appointed from the children of Israel, one man from every tribe; 5 and Joshua said to them: “Cross over before the ark of the Lord your God into the midst of the Jordan, and each one of you take up a stone on his shoulder, according to the number of the tribes of the children of Israel, 6 that this may be a sign among you when your children ask in time to come, saying, ‘What do these stones mean to you?’ 7 Then you shall answer them that the waters of the Jordan were cut off before the ark of the covenant of the Lord; when it crossed over the Jordan, the waters of the Jordan were cut off. And these stones shall be for a memorial to the children of Israel forever.” ~Joshua 4:4-7 NKJV Bible Gateway
Memorial. A memorial is something that we set up to remind ourselves of important events or happenings in our lives.
Wedding bands are memorials of covenant relationships with one’s spouse. Diplomas are memorials for academic achievement. Gravestones are memorials declaring the life and death of a loved one.
No matter the type of memorial, all of them have the same purpose, and that is to call us to remembrance.
Every memorial that is set up in our lives will either spur us on to a healthy and whole future, or they will hinder us from taking the necessary steps we need in order to truly walk in our desired creative success.
As creatives, and for those of us who are people of faith, we must be mindful of the kinds of memorials we are setting up in our lives. Are we establishing reminders for success, or stumbling blocks for failure?
As we walk into the second week of this creative journey here are 3 Memorials we need to investigate; Past, Present, and Future.
Past: Where You’ve Been
The memorial of the past consists of its fair share of victories as well as failures. The beauty of looking back at our past is that we get to acknowledge it for what it truly is–Our past.
Sometimes our past victories can become as crippling as our failures. Remembering the ‘good’ that we did in yesteryear can sometimes be the fading glory that prevents us from pressing into the present opportunity for ‘greatness’ in tomorrow.
We can become so intimidated by our past success that we feel as if we won’t be able to reach that former glory let alone exceed it.
In Philippians 3:13-14, the Apostle Pauls says:
13 Brethren, I do not count myself to have apprehended; but one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind and reaching forward to those things which are ahead, 14 I press toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.
As creatives, seeking a greater dream, we must, like the Apostle Paul, realize that we may not be at the level of success we’d like but we cannot let yesterday keep us from aiming for that level either.
We must learn to forget those old failures as well as put our past victories in their proper perspective if we are going to take hold of our future success.
In the same token, we have to keep stock of the victories we attained especially when the odds were against us and it seemed as if we were not going to reach or goals.
In Psalm 23, King David says of the Lord that His rod and His staff comfort him (Psalm 23) Some text suggest that the staff that David carried and referred to was a patriarchal staff passed down from father to son. On this staff were the victories over trial, and the mighty works that God had done for His people.
Being able to look back and remember how in the toughest of times we still achieved our goal is a comfort and an encouragement that urges us forward into our next victory.
If we overcame yesterday, we can surely do so today!
Present: Where You Are
Many of us creatives have found ourselves having a desired destination in mind but finding several reasons today for why we cannot get there. This often comes from looking at what you have in comparison to what you think you need, and then counting yourself out.
When we begin to see our present as insufficient in light of what we what for our future, and thus determine that it would be useless to make steps to contradict the insufficiency, we position ourselves for failure.
This is obviously not the kind of memorial we want to build.
If you are a person of faith, you must believe that the God of Creation not only gave you your creative dream and vision but that He is also aware of where you are and what you have, even in the face of what you ‘think’ you need.
Hebrews 13:5 says,
Let your conduct be without covetousness; be content with such things as you have. For He Himself has said, “I will never leave you nor forsake you.”~ NKJV
To be content with our present does not mean that we are ‘satisfied,’ nor that we are deciding to just lay day and allow life to happen at whim. Rather it means that we have taken stock of what we currently have in hand, and with the minds of faith, courage, and ingenuity we are trusting a power greater than us to bless our steps of faith.
When we learn to move with and beyond what we have, seeing opportunity instead of lack, that we grow in our creativity and ingenuity. Genius is born when we move in faith and courage where we are with what we have available to us.
- Remember that presently you are___________/you have_____________but you shall______________because you have faith.
Future: Where You Are Going
Where you are going is determined by how you think and what you see in your imagination. Proverbs 23:7 tells us that as a man thinks in his heart so is he.
In order for you to sow seeds for creative success, you must:
- Learn to see yourself as successful
- Learn to see yourself victorious in your vision
- Learn to see yourself beyond the current odds
Overcoming roadblocks build strength, faith, and endurance. Building proper memorials enables us to do that.
CREATIVE FAITH IN ACTION:
- In your journal, take the time to write down your memorials. Using the principles outlined in today’s course write down:
- Where you’ve been
- Where you are
- Where you ARE going
- Speak your success: Using an index card, write down five affirmations about the successful person you are. Example: I am a success. I am original. I am courageous. Speak these out loud to yourself especially when you are feeling discouraged.
- What memorials do you have that have helped you take the steps toward your Creative Dream & Vision?
- How have past victories hindered or enabled you in your creative growth?
- What advice would you share with others who have struggled to take hold of or regain their footing in conquering their dreams and goals?
Please share your wisdom and advice in the comments below.
FOR MORE INFO ABOUT THIS 12 WEEK JOURNEY, SEE Gearing Up to Prepare for Your Creative Success: Seeds We Sow
~Dream. Imagine. Believe. Do. CONQUER!