What Does it Mean to Co-Create With God?

I love the elegance of the Tango, the precision of the movements, the way the lead seems to effortlessly guide the follow into stunningly complex, striking moves that absolutely captivate the audience. She rarely diverts her eyes from his, as if she instinctively knows that her every move depends on that connection. It allows her to flourish, to joyfully express her creativity and talent in ways she could never achieve on her own. He is her home base. Without his lead, she does not move. With it, she dances in ways she never thought possible.

As Christian women, are we not like her, needing to keep our eyes on the Lord to know how, when, and where to move to accomplish our greatest potential? Do we not depend on Him as our home base from which we garner strength to do that which is in front of us, only to return to Him to recharge, to seek direction and guidance for our next move? Without Him we are nothing. With Him, our potential is beyond measure. We are in a co-creative dance with God in this grand adventure we call life. Perhaps we would be better served by learning to embrace our role in this elegant dance.

Taken by Surprise

The words “co-creating with God” were not part of my vocabulary 15 years ago. On a beautiful, warm June morning in 2010, I was taking a brisk walk on the Burke Gilman Trail near my home, feeling especially energized and alive. I loved that portion of the trail, as it was shaded with beautiful trees and gave me a stunning view of the Sammamish River.

A couple of bunnies caught my attention on the side of the trail along with a handsome rooster proudly strutting his stuff. Both brought a smile to my face. Being within walking distance of the Burke Gilman Trail was such a blessing. That morning, I was feeling particularly grateful for living in the Pacific Northwest.

With no advance warning, God suddenly started downloading a vision for something that was so big and so vivid that I knew my life would never be the same. I felt like I had been shot out of a cannon. The vision lasted 10-15 minutes. He showed me that I would be teaching a faith-based approach to personal growth and transformation called “Dare to Dream” that would be firmly rooted in principles He had been teaching me for years.

The Art of Co-Creating with God

In this month’s blog post, I’d like to explore what I have learned about the art of co-creating with God and to encourage other Christian women to step into that beautiful partnership. The co-creative process always starts with God, but when and where it actually begins is a mystery we may never fully understand. My experience on the Burke Gilman Train seemed like a beginning, but I now understand that Dare to Dream began well before I received God’s vision on that fateful day. He had been preparing me for a very long time to steward the size of the dream He was giving me.

We all have dreams in our hearts, however big or small. God places them there without our awareness. I have discovered that He will always bring them to fruition if we learn to say yes when prompted and then become willing to partner with Him in the co-creative process. As Christian women, we have an ongoing invitation to co-create with God, though we are often unaware of that open invitation. In addition, we are rarely aware of the steps we will be required to learn to partner with Him in that co-creative dance.

What Does it Look Like to Co-Create With God?

My experience has looked something like this: I listen for His direction and prompting, then take a step. Get excited about what He is doing. Listen again. He wants me to turn left instead of right. Drat! Course-correct and turn left. Not what I wanted, but ok. Listen again. More excitement at what’s happening. Ok, now we’re cooking. I run ahead of Him, as if to say, “I’ll let you know if I need you.” What do you mean you want me to wait? I was just getting started! Feel devastated. Ok, I’ll wait. Your will not mine. Rinse and repeat.

You will experience both agony and ecstasy in learning to co-create with God. That is the nature of walking with Him. The walk itself is the refining fire that molds you into the woman capable of stewarding the dreams He has in store for you. If you want all that God has prepared specifically for you, you must learn to walk hand-in-hand with Him to get it.

Co-creating with God is both an honor and a privilege. It also comes with responsibilities that cannot be taken lightly. There are conditions we must meet, as is often true with God, to reap the full benefits of walking with Him. We must learn to:

  • put Him first
  • continually stay attuned to God’s direction and guidance
  • pivot on a dime
  • take action while you wait
  • ‘choose’ to trust that God has your back
  • give God the benefit of the doubt
  • do what He tells you to do
  • let go of your will to honor His, even when you really don’ t want to
  • take correction
  • let go of your expectations of how things ‘should’ be and learn to accept how they actually are
  • become adept at recognizing Satan’s influence and learn how to counter it
  • accept your imperfections and believe that God can use you anyway
  • choose God over addictions that are powerfully calling you (drugs, alcohol, food, pornography, gambling, shopping, etc.)
  • do hard things, even when scared
  • recognize your limiting beliefs and become willing to challenge them
  • do things that may be counter to popular beliefs and practices, simply because they please God
  • regularly return to Him to recharge (in prayer, scripture reading and study, spending time alone with Him, doing things to connect with Him, etc.)
  • let go of who you think you are to embrace who you really are in God’s eyes.

These are not credentials listed on a job description that God checks off to determine if you are qualified to co-create with Him. These are things that you will learn over time in the process of walking with Him. Remember, He does not call the qualified. He always qualifies the called…you and me.

What Gets in the Way?

In my experience, there are several predictable obstacles that inhibit the co-creative process. Some of them are mentioned above. Though obstacles, they can become the WAY that God helps you learn to co-create with Him if you are willing to be honest with yourself and then let Him direct your path. What are these predictable obstacles?

  • not trusting God
  • early life trauma and resulting limiting beliefs
  • addictions
  • agreeing with the adversary
  • lack of support
  • inadequate self-care

I’ll talk briefly about each. I address these topics in much more depth in my course ‘Anatomy of Change: A Faith-Based Approach to Personal Growth and Transformation,’ which will be offered again soon.

Not Trusting God

Your relationship with God is the foundation of your spiritual walk. If that relationship is not in order, the rest of your life will be impacted. Many of us have had challenges in this area, often from our upbringing. That was my experience. I definitely did not trust God, and I didn’t know how to fix it. Fortunately, God does know how, and He gave me ample opportunities to learn to trust Him.

I had the mistaken idea that I just had to TRUST Him. I somehow thought trust was like a light switch that I should be able to turn on at will. It took time for me to learn that trusting God was a process, not an event. Over time I realized that it would take hundreds, perhaps thousands of baby steps to get there. Two steps forward, one step back. One step forward, two steps back. Two steps sideways…you get the picture.

God had proved Himself trustworthy many times in my life, but I had a short memory and needed a lot of reminders. I learned that it was best to be transparent with Him, and at times I would simply say, “I don’t trust You. I can’t do this. I don’t trust that You have my back.” Other times, through tears, I would say, “I CHOOSE to trust You. I don’t trust You, but I WANT to trust You on this. I’m terrified that You’re going to let me down, but I CHOOSE to trust You.”

Learning to trust is a process, and He will never give up on helping you. Perhaps you feel no trust at this point. Tell Him that, as often as you need to. Stay engaged. When you can, open the door a crack and say, “I WANT to learn to trust You, but I don’t. I can’t. That’s all I can say right now.” God will work with any effort you are willing to make. THAT is a beginning to the co-creative process.

Early Life Trauma and Resulting Limiting Beliefs

Years ago, I heard a psychologist say that “anything other than nurturing is considered trauma for children.” It seemed like a radical statement at the time, but the more I worked with clients around trauma, the more I experienced the truth of those words.

Many of us have experienced neglect, blatant abuse, or something in between. If your parents experienced any of these forms of abuse themselves and were never healed, they may have become abusive toward you or emotionally unavailable because of their preoccupation with their own unresolved issues.

In reaction, you likely developed some natural defense mechanisms to protect yourself that still play out in your life and that keep you from being open and transparent with yourself and with others. You also likely developed beliefs about not being safe, about your needs not being important, about not being able to trust anyone to get close to you, and about not being good enough.

You may need help in working through these defense mechanisms and limiting beliefs, but YOU are worth the effort. You probably have had ample opportunities in your life to notice that something is getting in the way of you having the life you truly want. Once you demonstrate a willingness to look at the role your defenses and self-limiting beliefs may be playing, God will step in to help you in any number of ways…directly through revelation, or indirectly through bringing resources and people across your path to play a role in your healing process. Your willingness sets the co-creative process in motion.


In my experience, almost everyone has some form of addiction. I define addiction as any substance, behavior, or activity we compulsively seek to alter our emotional or physical state.  It is typically something that gives us momentary comfort and an illusion of control over our circumstances or our state of mind.

Some common addictions are: food (especially sugar), sex, drugs, alcohol, shopping, smoking, gambling, internet use, negativity, texting, workaholism, some relationships, pornography, debting or overspending, among others.

Do you have an addiction that keeps you from engaging fully in your life, one that you use for comfort, to escape, to feel in control, or to avoid physical or emotional connection with others, with yourself or with God? The Lord wants to be first in your life. Giving in to an addiction is an indicator that you are putting something or someone else before God.  If you take a step forward to address your addiction(s), He will step forward to help you. That’s how co-creation works.

Agreeing With the Adversary

“The thief comes only to steal, kill and destroy. I came that they might have life and might have it abundantly.” (John 10:10) If Satan knocked on your door and said, “I’m here to mess with your thinking and to make you feel bad about yourself…can I come in?” You would never agree to let him in!

He knows that, so he always finds a way in without you realizing it. He takes advantage of any open doors or vulnerabilities and makes himself right at home. Some common ones include addictions, bitterness, early life trauma, physical and mental infirmity, relationship discord, adultery, unforgiveness, wrong or distorted thinking, among others.

As women, we even more commonly resort to judging and criticizing ourselves and others without ever questioning our thoughts, words or motives. I devote an entire chapter to Spiritual Warfare in Volume 1 of my book, Dare to Dream: The Art of Co-creating with God, because it is so important to learn how to deal with the adversary. Agreeing with the enemy is a trap that we often fall into without even realizing it.

For you to truly walk with the Lord in fulness, you need to think about and treat yourself and others with dignity. You must also attend to any open doors and vulnerabilities in your life. If you take steps toward addressing any of these areas of discord, the Lord will absolutely step forward with You. He WANTS to help you, but you must first take an action. Any step on your part will start the co-creative process.

Lack of Support

God’s dreams for you are bigger than your own, making it impossible for you to accomplish them alone. He builds His kingdom by making it necessary for believers to work together to accomplish His purposes. You are no exception.

What kind of support system do you have? Where do you go when you need advice, encouragement, accountability, prayer, help or emotional support? Do you tend to keep things to yourself, never reaching out for support? God does not intend for us to go through life alone, but many of us isolate and have a hard time reaching out to others.

If this describes you, what kind of baby steps can you take to demonstrate to God that you are willing to let Him bring others alongside you for love and support? When I was having difficulty writing my Dare to Dream books, God coaxed me to reach out to Christian women friends for prayer support. When I actually did it (as hard as that was), it gave me the courage to press forward. He prompted. I responded. That’s co-creation.

In Closing

As Christians, there is nothing more rewarding than learning to co-create with God. Yes, it is hard, but the rewards far outweigh the challenges. If you learn to keep your eyes on Him and respond to His gentle (and sometimes not so gentle) promptings, it will be a dance like no other. You will inevitably be thrown off-track in the process . . . that is the nature of growth and change. But God will always help you course-correct if your heart is tuned to His.

If you are interested in learning more about my upcoming course, “Anatomy of Change: A Faith-Based Approach to Personal Growth and Transformation,” please let me know at [email protected]. I’ll email you with details when they become available.


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