Spiritual Practice

In God’s Imagination

Sarah Arbuckle, 17

Imagination. Why do we have it? Why did God give us the ability to think, hope, and dream? Why does God allow us to share in God’s creativity? The reason is written in the Word itself. God gave us creativity so that we could create. God gave us creativity so that we could dream of a better tomorrow, of progress, of what the world could be if we used the gift of imagination. Imagination has taken us from wooden carts pulled by horses to cars that move by pushing one foot down on a little pedal. Imagination has brought us from writing letters with a quill and ink to cell phones that allow us to speak to others instantly, no matter where they are. Our imagination allows the world to progress. Imagination designed and built the Eiffel Tower, the Statue of Liberty, and all the other amazing structures in our world. Genesis 1:1 (NIV) says, “In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.” The very first verse of scripture talks about the use of imagination: “God created . . .” If God hadn’t used imagination “in the beginning,” we wouldn’t be here.

One of my favorite movies is Disney’s Peter Pan. I have always been captivated by the idea of never growing up, of all my hopes and dreams coming true, of never losing my imagination. Many people associate growing up with the loss of dreams, aspirations, and imagination. But maybe growing up means being able to act on our dreams and to bring them to life. If the youth of the world decided to keep our imagination strong as we grow up, where would the world be in ten years? I’m not talking about flying cars or jetpacks. What if we all used our imagination to create a world at peace?

Many people don’t realize how important imagination and creativity are. These gifts can be used for so much more than daydreaming during a boring class at school or doodling in the margins of a notebook. Imagination is what gives us hope when we’re going through the hardest times; creativity allows us to express ourselves in ways that words can’t—through music, painting, or dance. Imagination allows us to see the beauty of a sunset, the ocean, or another person.

Without imagination, we would be boring. We would be narrow-minded people who do exactly the same thing over and over again, day after day, because we wouldn’t be able to create another way to spend our time. God didn’t give us the ability to hope, dream, create, and imagine on a whim. God gave us these gifts so that we could be more like God. After all, God created us in God’s image. Genesis 1:27 (NRSV) says, “So God created humankind in his image, in the image of God he created them; male and female he created them.” God created us to be like God, and part of creation was receiving God’s gift of imagination.


imagine in sand2 iStock_000011562895_LargeDIG DEEPER

Don’t waste the imagination God has given you. Get together with family or friends. Brainstorm to come up with a list or a drawing in response to questions such as these: What kind of world does God imagine? What would living in a world of peace, love, and generosity be like? How can we help God create a better tomorrow?

Sarah Arbuckle, 17 , of Round Rock, Texas, is a dreamer who shares her imagination and love of writing with the world.

—from devozine (January/February 2016). Copyright © 2015 by The Upper Room®. All rights reserved.

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