The Ten: Ways to foster creativity in your local church

"Creativity is contagious. Pass it on."—Albert Einstein

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1. Embrace limitations

Creativity isn’t about being well resourced; it’s about working resourcefully with what God has given you. If you can’t afford a video camera to live-stream church services, try a different format: Instagram stories, SoundCloud or Facebook Live!

2. Modern right

Many churches fall into the trap of attempting to replicate what bigger and better-resourced churches do to attract members. Instead, learn your unique flavour. Otherwise you’ll risk being swallowed by competition.

3. Focus on empowerment, not control

To cultivate creativity, it’s important to establish freedom within set boundaries so that creatives feel ownership of their church. Don’t micromanage. It kills motivation, discourages members and limits vision.

4. There’s strength in numbers

One of the biggest pitfalls creatives (and most people) face is trying to do everything themselves. It’s hard to trust others with your creative vision, but it’s important to remember that it’s God who should be in control, not us. He created the Church as a “body” with different members and different talents. Trust them, trust Him.

5. Change it up

Change up the church noticeboard. Reshuffle the stage. Paint a wall. Buy some plants. Install a TV. Hang some photos. Redecorating can inspire, motivate and leave members and visitors feeling like their church is a relevant, happening space.

6. Get youth involved

Young people are naturally up-to-date with social and design trends. Ask them what they’d like to see and what they think will attract visitors, and then give them the tools to do it.

"Creativity isn't about being well resourced; it's about working resourcefully with what God has given you."

7. Don’t lose God to ego

Ask God to give you the discernment to know when to pursue your vision, and when to sacrifice your vision to preserve relationships. Don’t let a program or ministry split your church in two.

8. Educate the masses

It can be disheartening when a group of creatives are limited by church members who don’t share their vision. A potential solution? Nominate a spokesperson to share this vision and its justifications, goals and dreams.

9. Get free resources

There are plenty of free or cheap resources online that will bring your church into the 21st century. Facebook has many church communications groups that you can join that share free posters, graphics and resources, and YouTube channels like Dan Stevers have lots of free videos and intro clips to share.

10. Doing is better than imagining

Creatives are great at developing ideas, but many struggle to execute them. Of the 20 creative ideas you’ve had to improve Sabbath school, just start with one. To keep you accountable, ask people who are willing and organised to help you.