In May of 2006, I attended a writer’s conference and heard a former Disney Imagineer named McNair Wilson speak. It was one of the best messages I’ve ever heard – and I’ve heard a lot of sermons, talks, and lectures.
At the conclusion of that evening’s session, I went over to express my gratitude to McNair where I overheard him say to someone, “I’ve got to find a TV to watch the 24 finale tomorrow night.” I immediately discovered that he and I had the same problem. We were in the North Carolina mountains at a retreat center with no TV’s and we had to know how Jack Bauer was going to get out of his current mess.
After thanking him for his inspirational message, I said, “Hey, if you find a TV let me know. I’m addicted to 24.”
He found a TV the next day and invited me to join him. We were able to help Jack out during the last two hours of the season. The next May, at the same conference, we were in the same predicament. (Someone buy this conference center some TV’s please!) But, once again, we bailed Jack out of his next 24 hour session with evil. Thanks to this fad called the internet, I’ve been able to keep up with McNair’s whereabouts. If you ever get a chance to meet him or hear him in person, GO! He is a creative genius.
In McNair’s latest book, HATCH! Brainstorming Secrets of a Theme Park Designer, he shares his 7 Agreements of Brainstorming. In the midst of his teaching, he pauses to give a little sermonette on the importance of embracing our creativity and imagination. He’s given me permission to post this little excerpt.
I highly recommend HATCH! to anyone seeking to expand their creativity, inspire masses, and make a difference in the world.
(The bold type is mine.)
Everyone one of us is a glowing reflection of our Creator. Some glow brighter than others, at times. Some refuse to glow or, embarrassed by their own spark, hide it. Some feel that it isn’t fair that one light may shine a bit brighter than others. That glow is evidence that we are all flares off the original spark – the Original Idea. A shimmer of Eternal imagination goes on forever in each of us.
This goes triple for children, since they have not yet begun to self-censor, or believe the double-talk and drivel of doubt that we “grown-ups” have settled for. We adults have chosen to live every worry-plagued day of our lives guided more by what can’t be – rather than inspired by what we can and might be. As someone has aptly observed, we do not live our dreams because we’re too busy living our fears.
Children are born with a holy ignorance of Can’t. They possess a blessed unfamiliarity with impossible. They traffic in Wonder and Try. Children constantly ask, “Why not?” The most useful item in their toolbox of learning is an unstoppable curiosity. As childlike curiosity wanes, learning begins to fade. Adults long ago stopped upending rocks just to say hello to the teeming kingdoms beneath. A bug’s life no longer fascinates us. Sadly, nor does our own journey carry even a whiff of adventure anymore.
Real wisdom comes from what we learn after we “know everything.” Pursuing “what’s next?” and “what else is there?” fills the life of an “actively creative” person.
Now and then our child-like spirit sticks a foot in – or a nose out – and says, “I want to play too!” If we allow it – if we let down our grown-up guard – those original instincts we displayed as a child can and will re-emerge to sing, dance, cackle, shout, and explore the world. We were all told, too-young, to color inside the creativity crushing lines. The child you once were – and might yet be again – will not be careful, but sloppy and more than a bit reckless, because it genuinely doesn’t matter. The sooner we stop worrying about so many things, the sooner we can more truly reflect our Maker and participate in making a difference.
If you like this, use the button below to pass it on! Thanks!