We were created by an infinitely creative God to reflect his love and character to the world. One way we do that is by continuing his creative work. In this energizing book, serial entrepreneur and bestselling author Jordan Raynor helps artists, entrepreneurs, writers, and other creatives reimagine our work as service to God and others, addressing such penetrating questions as
Is my work as a creative really as God-honoring as that of a pastor or missionary?
What does it look like to create not to make a name for myself but to glorify God and serve others?
How can I use my work to fulfill Jesus's command to create disciples?
Will what I make today matter in eternity?
To answer these questions, Raynor shares compelling stories from an eclectic group of 40+ Christian entrepreneurs, including the founders of TOMS Shoes, Charity: Water, Chick-fil-A, In-N-Out Burger, Guinness, HTC, and Sevenly, as well as nontraditional entrepreneurs such as C. S. Lewis, Johann Sebastian Bach, and J. R. R. Tolkien. Raynor's "show" rather than "tell," story-driven style makes you feel as if you are sitting at the feet of some of the godliest and most successful entrepreneurs of all time.
Perfectly poised to reach today's growing creative class, this unique work restores God's position as the first entrepreneur, helping readers see the eternal value in the work they do today.
Called to Create by Jordan Raynor is now one of my top picks for faithful creatives. Jordan does an amazing job reminding us why creating is so important to our Creator, and why our work matters. It’s especially valuable for those of us who work in a secular market who often struggle with finding eternal value in all we do. But as he points out, ALL we do can glorify God. It matters to Him how we build our businesses, what we create, how we invest our time and finances into His kingdom, and how we treat people. The biggest takeaway I had from the book can be found in the last few pages. What would my work look like if I were creating it for Heaven’s library? Thank you, Jordan, for seeing this need in the creative business industry and filling it with this book.
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Though I've made the switch from traditional publishing to indie publishing, it hasn't been that long ago that I struggled with receiving rejection letters. And being an independent author comes with its own difficulties. No matter what path you take in your writing career, there will always be bad days looming in the future. I hope these steps will help you survive your next bad day.
Platform is the thing that you have to stand on to get hurt. - Michael Hyatt
When I think of platform, I can't help but think of gallows. Perhaps that's the reason why most people cringe when they hear the word. It sounds open, exposed, vulnerable, and completely outside of your control.
As I started at that quote on my phone and this severe image propped up in my mind. It's natural for us to fear platform. It's where people are often humiliated, and if we're thinking about Christ, where he stood and the audience fought to have him crucified (Matthew 27:11-26). They had the choice to give Him life or give Him death. That's a tough scene to swallow, and I'm sure it doesn't make you want to go out and tweet something or write a vulnerable post or video to share with your onlookers.
But isn't that what we're doing every time we do? We're giving other people power to make or break us--to build us up or tear us down, to speak life or death into us.
Now, let's take it a step further. When you look at the cross on a wall, shelf, or around someone's neck, do you think about the sacrifice or the reward? The death it brought or the life it bought? You see, sweet friend, if there never was a sacrifice, there could never be an abundant life. And isn't that what we're all seeking? Every crucifixion brings us closer to our truest form, to the purest person we're being molded to be. God knew that sacrificing His son would be the best for everyone. So too, does He know that your sacrifice will be for the good of all too. You are walking out your story with every step, and every great story has its monsters. Platform will likely be one of them, but the good news is that vulnerability you're so afraid of, it's actually the superpower you never knew you had.
In this video, I discuss what it takes to live the life of your dreams based on my own experiences. Below each, you'll find questions. As you watch, be thinking about these as they relate to your own life situation.
Define your dream.
How do you feel about your life now?
How do you want to feel about your life?
Live below your means.
Are you willing to make the tough decisions it takes to live the life you want?
Are you willing to downsize or eliminate debt to live you dream?
How much are you willing to invest in what you want?
Who do you think is successful?
Do you find yourself comparing your success to theirs?
Who in your life thinks you're successful?
How much time per week are you creating? (Psst...Map it out, if you don't already. There are a variety of apps that can help you with this. I use Toggl.)
If you listed 5 labels that describe yourself, does "artist" (writer, crafter, musician, actor, creative entrepreneur, painter, etc.) rank on that list?
If so, are you spending a balanced amount of time creating in order to justify that label?
Turn off the negativity.
Who do you share you art with before public release?
Do these people (friends, family, industry professionals, etc.) build you up or tear you down?
How can you make adjustments to decrease the amount of negativity coming into your life and art?
"The opposite of love is not hate, it's indifference. The opposite of art is not ugliness, it's indifference. The opposite of faith is not heresy, it's indifference. And the opposite of life is not death, it's indifference."— Elie Wiesel