Some artists aspire to a creative career with ambitions towards achieving a level of affluence that will afford them a luxury lifestyle of ease and creature comforts, as they embark on their creative journeys. Unfortunately, the road chosen can sometimes lead to the development of a self-serving creativity based in ego that centers on the fulfillment of superficial appetites and the dead-heading of talents and creative calling.
Renaissance artist, rock musician, producer and actor Lenny Kravitz gave voice to the effects of consumption-based creativity and the benefits of maintaining creative hunger towards productivity, amidst the critical and financial success achieved over the course of his career, during a previous interview:
“I’m more hungry now than I was eleven years ago. Which is great because I see a lot of artists that have been out for a long period of time. They get kind of fat.”
Traditionally, within culture, affluence for artists is often conflated with a power that is substantiated by financial wealth and fame. When creativity is sourced through the affluence of the Creator, it is often evidenced by a purpose, shaped through humility and reciprocity that transcends the needs of ego—yielding an art that speaks to the truth and beauty of the human experience, and the attributes of faith, hope and love, as reflected through the image and likeness of the Creator within.
This level of creative affluence is mirrored through the narrative and identity of Christ, as the creative word of God, through which the heavens and earth were created.
In order to fulfill the purpose and intent of the Creator towards creation, Christ repurposed his creative power through his humility—subjecting himself to the nearsightedness of the human experience and the unknowns of death, in order to serve the needs of humanity towards salvation. In doing so, he rewrote the spiritual and natural laws that formerly separated the heavens and the earth through his death and resurrection, gaining an eternal all-encompassing power and affluence—per the following excerpt taken from the Apostle Paul’s letter to the Philippians:
“He always had the nature of God,
But he did not think that by force
He should try to remain equal with God.
Instead of this, of his own free will
He gave up all he had,
And took the nature of a servant.
He became like a human being and
Appeared in human likeness.
He was humble and walked
The path of obedience all the way to death—
His death on the cross.
For this reason God raised him
To the highest place above and gave him
The name that is greater than any other name.”
The importance of humility for artists towards realizing creative power, affluence and an effective creativity is further illustrated in the following advisory, also found within the Apostle Paul’s letter to the Philippians, preceding the above life narrative of Christ:
“Don’t do anything from selfish ambition or from a cheap desire to boast, but be humble toward one another, always considering others better than yourselves. And look out for one another’s interests, not just for your own. The attitude you should have is the one that Christ Jesus had:”
When artists are able to approach their craft with a heart of humility and a mindset towards service, they are able to counter the marketplace norms that work to confine and limit their personal and professional growth and ascend to a level of creative affluence that supersedes the traditional metrics of fame and monetary wealth.