Creating Like the Creator

Guest Post by: Leslie Manlapig of Pink Stripey Socks

It’s 10pm. I’m standing in the middle of the kitchen, carefully pouring colorful beads into an aluminum foil mold.  Then, I nervously place everything into the oven.  Ten minutes later, I pull them out and let them cool.  With great anticipation, I peel the colorful glob out of its mold and reveal this word:  Joy.


When I was a little girl growing up in church, I always believed that some jobs were “holier” than others.  Pastor, missionary, teacher, and social worker consistently ranked high on my “holy” list.  These were the people that directly served God and his people.

Back then (like now), I was a pretty shy kid who enjoyed writing fantasy stories and doodling.  I never shared my creations with other people.  Oh no.  These were merely silly, frivolous hobbies.  They certainly weren’t the skills that would put me on the “holy” list.


Notice a pattern?

I had separated skills and jobs into “God-related” and “non-God related” categories.  I don’t know about you, but I’ve always struggled with this mentality.


Lately, God’s been using these verses to slowly change my heart.


Colossians 1:20 tells me that all things are reconciled through Christ  

Genesis 1:27 reminds me that we’re made in the image of God

Genesis 1:31 describes God being pleased with all the things that He made


These verses remind me that I can’t put things into “God” or “non-God” categories.  Christ came to redeem everything.  Everything belongs to Him.  Everything is being changed and made holy by Him.

These verses also remind me that God is the ultimate creator and that He found pleasure in the act of creating.


Madeline L’Engle once said, “When we are writing, or painting, or composing, we are, during the time of creativity, freed from normal restrictions and opened to a wider world, where colors are brighter, sounds clearer, and people more wondrously complex than we normally realize.”

When I create things, I feel excitement, wonder, and most of all, joy.  Creating allows me to see the world in a different way.  The joy that I feel when I’m writing, doodling, or even melting colorful plastic beads in an oven is a gift from God.


I create and I feel that joy because I’m made in the image of a wonderful creator.

And there’s nothing silly or frivolous about that.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAI’m a mild-mannered stay-at-home mommy by day and a mad-scientist craft-o-holic at night.  I’m a true-blue “crapter.”  I love giving stuff a second life and turning “junk” into something beautiful, useful, or fun.

Head over for some sweet crapting ideas at Pink Stripey Socks. You can also follow her sweet heart on Facebook and Pinterest.

Existing for Others

bunk beds

A homemade diaper table became a bunk bed. We had been reading Bernstein Bear books and they were enamored with brother and sister bear’s bunk bed.

Sometimes it becomes very quiet in our house, too quiet…


Ever have those moments? Panic settles in as you run from room to room to find out what is going down.

A few moments from the Van Engen house:

  • A fashion show where the two kids modeled underwear on all their extremities. 
  • The impromptu science experiment in the basement involving baking soda, vinegar, and other substances.
  • The perfume shop that opened in the kitchen.
  • Josiah’s face and hair smeared with seven layers of lip gloss.
  • Play doh time in a bed
  • Toilet paper… I don’t need to expand.
  • Crayons and a wall.

(Now you are wondering if I watch my kids at all 🙂 )

Josiah Face

God was and is a creator. We are his workmanship. God labored over us with the deepest love.


Give your creativity unsupervised space.

To be meaningful, art must serve, must wash feet. Like Jesus, who has been called “the man for others” our art, to have meaning, must exist for others. [p86] Micheal Card, Scribbling in the Sand. 


I am so encouraged by the creative ways people are making a difference. Let’s keep adding to the ways we exist for others, letting our art and our talents serve.