Today marks the second session of #CreativeCoaching with Carlos Whittaker and my new set of friends! If you have no idea what I’m talking about check out my introductory blog. I actually ended up in the meeting a few minutes late (Outlook>iCal>iCloud>iPhone>Sync Failure). I realized I was late when I got this tweet from Carlos:
As soon as I saw it, I thought “WHAT THE WHAT!?!?!” and ran down the staircase to my #DenOfZen threw on my #beatsbyDRE and bounced on into Adobe Connect.
Luckily I wasn’t shunned or stoned (I mean this in the biblical sense), but instead welcomed with smiled and open digital arms into the conversation on #Innovation. As part of our assignments from the last class we were to read #TheMythsOfInnovation by Scott Berkun. You can check out my review here.
We talked about ways we strengthen our innovation/creative skills. Carlos shared one where he sets a #ConsumeAlarm. It’s a daily alarm that will randomly go off on his phone that says “consume”. He at that point takes note of something that is around him and writes it in an Evernote folder entitled “Consume.” This could be anything from “White room with white furniture.” to “kids playing kickball.” It’s just a way to constantly be observant of what’s around and a file to pull from for later creative inspiration.
After sharing some of our insights from the book and thoughts on personal innovation we began talking about innovation and it’s place in the church.
We began by diving into scripture and looking at Isaiah 26:8 - In the path of your justice, Lord, we wait for you; with all our being, we long for your name and your acclaim. (CEB)
We talked about the innovative word “wait”. What that implies for us as we create weekly to “wait for you, with our whole being”. We move so fast. We are a people of multi-taskers. We are high quantity and low quality. This morning, while GPS tracking my pace and distance, I ran 4.2 miles while listening to Elevation Worship, read my YouVersion plan for the day, updated Path with the music I was listening to while running - my location and thoughts on my run - and answered 3 emails and set up a lunch appointment with a volunteer for next week… it’s hard to innovate/create for the church without slowing down and “waiting” to hear from God. Our best ideas will pour from us when we are most filled with the Holy Spirit.
Along with our desire to push forward and seek after innovation and relevance, the church must learn to have a healthy balance of understand it’s culture and challenging it’s culture. If a local church community is not ready for the next innovative/creative thing you have planned then a few things to think about:
- You need a better understanding of your church culture.
- You shouldn’t roll out the new innovation without any regard to the culture.
- You should roll out the new innovation slowly.
- It’s ok to push your people.
- It’s not ok to force your people.
- Worship is willing.
- Worship is not forced.
- Earn the trust of your church.
Innovation for your church or wherever you create will happen most freely and authentically whenever you are innovating yourself. We must constantly be innovating ourselves and getting into the practices of stretching and growing if we are going to be able to lead our people in that direction as well. “There is your ethos, and your church’s ethos.” Having a clear understanding of who you are and who you are in your role at your church is key.
Carlos challenged us to mix something up this week. He asked: “What is something that you have always done one way but can do in a new way this week? (e.g. drive a new route to work, order a different drink at Starbucks, change the color of your dry erase markers)” Something to cause some disruption in our day to day lives that will help us to view things differently. - I’m a t-shirt and jeans kinda guy. So this week (starting tomorrow until the wednesday our next coaching session on the 22nd) I’m going to wear a shirt and tie every day. I’m going to dress it up a bit. Let’s see if that causes some innovation. : )
He also challenged us to do something that we have been wanting to do, but haven’t had the time to do. For me this is definitely painting. I used to paint a lot but haven’t had the time to do it in quite some time. I’m gonna grab some canvases and give it a go. At least one this week. Maybe I can get Kristin and Rylee involved…
Then the final creative challenge: “We are great at innovation in our particular creative sweet spots. Yet I (Carlos) think that this is only the tip of the iceberg when it comes to creative ability. This month we are going to become innovative in our creativity. We are going to master a new creative skill set in order to unleash creativity in the rest of our lives.” - Carlos gave each of us a creative skill to master that we don’t currently work with. My assignment is to learn put on a #5MinuteMagicShow with at least 3 tricks for a group of 5 or more kids (or adults). So I have 14 days to become an amateur Criss Angel… this should be fun!