What have you been up to lately? I am guessing while you may answer “how are you?” With “busy” you just might answer “What have you been up to lately?” With “nothing.”
Maybe as we plod our way through these Covid days and much has been taken away from us, some permanently some only temporarily, we could make something as we pass the time. I have heard and read a lot about learning something (new language, how to bake, etc.) and about failing to do so! But I have heard/read precious little (maybe I look in all the wrong places) about making things. As in instead of “self-improvement” what if we embrace who we already are are make something?
One of the obvious implications of being created in the image of God is that like God we are makers. God makes heaven and earth, and we make tacos. Ok maybe not tacos, but something, right?
We humans embrace our maker side in countless ways, we build roads and cities, we build empires and corporations, we build families and libraries. Makers create mugs (not that the world needs any more mugs, according to my dad:), they create poems and art pieces, makers create dietary plans and fitness trajectories. Makers build communities, sports teams, skating rinks, and churches. Makers create meals, bandaids with special little drawings on them, and special occasions. This Christmas my sister-in-law created a novelty cribbage board with pegging for 6 players, one for each member of her immediate family.
We make because we are human. It hardly matters what we make.
For my part I have an idea about the eternality of God, I didn’t read it anywhere but I feel it. Let me explain. Have you ever been in the process of making something and the time literally passed you by, as in you look up and hours have passed? This happens to me sometimes, less and less often as our culture speeds up and the demands of life (aka responsibilities I happily take on and slowly increase as my abilities increase and folks ask), but still, it happens sometimes that I get into something and suddenly it is dark outside.
Time stands still when I am making something and truly pouring myself into the process.
God, the maker of heaven and earth, truly putting his Triune self into the creating, is a being for whom time is standing still. I don’t know, maybe that sounds heretical. Nevertheless, there is something about being God, and thus a human made in his image, that strikes me leading obviously and straightforwardly to our having desires to make things.
I could probably find stats and studies that show that we are happier or more content or fulfilled when we make things, but I think you know it to be true, I am guessing you have experienced it. To produce rather than consume, at least some of the time, is gratifying and necessary.
If you are with me, if you are among those who might have a hard time identifying what you have made lately, consider taking up the challenge to make something. It can a bird house for springtime nesting, a series of poems or drawings, a great playlist on Spotify, a podcast (though do we really need any more of those? They feel like mugs). Whatever floats your boat why not make it (maybe even make a little boat, one of those one that miraculously fits in a bottle or a little paper one that floats:)