Have you ever written a song that you were so excited to perform and then did so but left feeling empty because you could count the crickets chirping? Do you sometimes find that you are on a high about your recent creative adventure only to find everyone else’s enthusiasm lacking?
Maybe what you were doing was good but you left out an important step.
I was doing my daily blog reading the other day and I ran across a quote that really hit me. It sucker-punched me not simply because of how it relates to ministry but how true it is for life and creativity in general. Here it is:
“Some of the worst sermons I’ve ever heard were great sermons delivered to the wrong people.” – Steven Furtick
I like this a lot because I tend to not think about the audience when writing. Either when writing songs or writing in general, I tend to focus on finishing it and bringing it to fruition. But I can do everything right and then have no platform because the people I am trying to reach either 1) won’t understand or 2) won’t care.
This is an issue for me because sometimes I make something that is either rejected or not talked about and I feel hurt. Maybe all it is is that I am writing good stuff but not for the right group. Or maybe it needs some tweaking. All I know is that this quote brings me hope. Hope because if something doesn’t work the first time, I’ll try again. Or simply try it somewhere else.
Furtick went to explain that “God determines your faithfulness to the Word. But your audience determines who receives the focus of the Word.” Even though Pastor Furtick is referring to sermon planning, I believe that we need to hold the same standards when applied to our creativity. We need to know if we are being faithful to God and to our creativity and relevancy at all times. But we also need to remember who we are presenting this to.
Know who you are speaking to at all times. And tweak along the way. Because if not, it could be falling on unexcited ears.