My “Big Magic” Story

“Big Magic: Creative Living Beyond Fear.” What a great book! At least I thought so, and so did thousands of other people. I understand it’s not for everyone, but I felt so inspired I wanted to share some of the best things I got out of this book. This is both for your enjoyment and to consolidate my thoughts before book group tonight.

So, book group ladies–spoiler alert!

This book came to me at the perfect time. After many years of neglecting much of my creative bent–I have started calling myself an artist again. I largely didn’t pursue art of any type as a vocation because as Gilbert talks about creative living is not a good career choice.

Unfortunately, I didn’t pursue anything more practical in terms of making money and I neglected song writing, guitar playing, singing, drawing, painting, creative writing, and other things. I did channel my creativity into cooking, preaching, or creating a class.

The story that Gilbert tells about Clive James a written, poet, and critic who recovered from depression falling a huge failure by returning to creativity through painting starts on his daughters bicycle resonated deeply with me.

It wasn’t until I failed big time two years ago–at something that I thought was my life calling that I returned to art. Please don’t try to say I didn’t fail. I tried to start something–it didn’t happen. That’s all I mean.

I thought church was my calling–but during the time where I could barely drag myself to church something got me to write a story and to start drawing.

Gilbert would say it was my “genius,” I say it was the Holy Spirit working with my spirit.  Drawing those pictures, writing and rewriting the story with no expectation except holding it in my hands someday– brought me healing.

Clive James went back to writing, and I may go back to church planting. But for now, without fear I am going to enjoy creating books.

Well, I planned on writing a lot more about the book but I am being summoned by my two-year-old.

Did you read “Big Magic?” What did you get out of it? Other than the part discussed above, my favorite part was about being a trickster vs. a martyr. What did you think about that? I’d love to explore that theme theologically.




Published by Amy Louise Negussie

Writer, pastor, and community creator passionate about helping urban people connect to one another, self, and God. Amy lives in Chicago with her boys (1 husband, 2 sons, and 1 dog) walking distance to Wrigley Field (go Cubbies!).

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