Navigating The Fine Line Between The Administrative And The Creative

For a large part of my life, I’ve struggled with a dichotomy. There are two sides to me; most of the time they coexist peacefully, but sometimes they battle each other. This duality isn’t a life-or-death spiritual issue, but it does affect the way I think, the way I work, the way I play…and even the way I worship. I’m talking about the two sides of my personality: the administrative side and the creative side.

The administrative side of me is efficient and organized; the creative side is disorganized and less-than-tidy. When I’m predominantly administrative, I want to check off all the boxes: to produce, be done, and move on to the next item; the creative part of me dwells on each detail, looking to “plus” everything (to use the Disney parlance).

When dealing with people, the creative side of me is sensitive and thoughtful to a fault; the administrative side of me can speak or comment without regard to the fallout. The creative side of me nurtures and cherishes relationships; the administrative side wants to go it alone for the sake of efficiency.

Worship is easy for me as a creative person; I’m moved by songs, by the immense innovation present throughout creation, and by the images in God’s Word. I appreciate heartfelt and imaginative expressions of praise and worship, and I enjoy devising my own forms of worship. On the other side of the coin, I’m easily distracted when things aren’t “just so”; I can be mortified and upset over the slightest typo or punctuation mistake in the multimedia (most of which I’m responsible for at Eastridge). At other churches or in other worship venues, both sides of me team up to make me analytical and sometimes critical of expressions of worship; it’s weird, because I can worship wholeheartedly in the moment yet critique a service or experience, sometimes harshly, afterward.

There are times when both sides work in harmony to my advantage…and to the advantage of the team. Working in church communications and worship, I utilize both sides, occasionally at the same time. I’m often the administrative force in our Creative Arts ministry, and it’s my job to hold up the value of clear communication churchwide amidst the creative decisions that are made daily.

I often find that the administrative and creative sides are most at odds with each other at home. It’s easy to get caught up in writing or reading or engaging in other endeavors while neglecting the floors that need to be vacuumed, the clothes that need to be folded, and the dishes that need to be washed and put up; on the other hand, I can sometimes be a working machine around the house without doing anything to feed my spirit or creative nature.

I’ve come to the conclusion that there’s no way to balance these two sides. I just have to live with one dominating the other at different times and trust that I’m going what God wants me to do. I’m at peace with the dichotomy, with the fine line between two diametrically different natures; it makes for rarely a dull moment.

One thought on “Navigating The Fine Line Between The Administrative And The Creative

  1. Wow..I know this feeling all to well. The tug of the administrative to-dos and the “other” reading/writing/creative. I’m comforted to know that there are others who share in this dichotomy whilst remaining sane to a certain degree.

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