God Is a Patron of the ArtsDaily Reflection / Produced by The High Calling
And whatever you do, do it heartily, as to the Lord and not to men.
"I don't know how not to do this." With a face flushed and filled with frustration, this was my husband’s answer to the question "would you ever quit?" His answer never changes. I'm not surprised. My husband is an artist.
He is what most would describe as artsy. A self-taught fashion designer, my husband has lived the roller coaster ride of trying to make a living from a dream. But he isn't an artist for the money. It’s more than that. He's an artist because that is who God has called him to be.
It's his way of expression, his love language and way of escape. It's how he shaped his identity, and it's a safe place to explore who he'll become. It's how God teaches him to trust … again and yet again. It's his laboratory for faith.
Being an artist is a gift with a price. I've watched him struggle under the weight of it. I've watched him passionately pursue his art when others gave up, when resources were non-existent, and when personal failure clawed at his self-esteem.
For him, there is no alternative to a life of creativity. He heard and responded to the great calling on his life. For Him, I don't believe it was a choice as much as a spirit-filled response to a God who summoned.
And yet, he has also chosen to be a devoted father and husband. Reconciling his art, his faith, and his family has not been easy. There's always the question of whether his choices keep him away from some of the success he's dreamed of. I've watched the either/or dilemma play out in the lives of his contemporaries.
The world wants them to choose. For my husband, it always circles back around to God.
Our God is a patron of the arts. He believes in dance and theater, photography and fashion. Our God is a singer and painter. He is the giver of the creative gift, and it was he who decided the world needs—can't do without—our unique contributions.
QUESTIONS FOR FURTHER REFLECTION: Have you ever tried to make a living from your art? Are you in relationship with someone who does? Have you struggled to support them? Have you ever wanted to or actually quit your form of expression because you don't make money from it? How has God shown up as a partner in your efforts?
PRAYER: Creator of heaven and earth, the God who sings over us and paints by number our days … thank you. Thank you for being a God of creativity and vision. We are your most holy work, a creative expression of who you are. Help us to love you better as we lend our lives to you through the arts. Help us to connect more deeply with your divine presence in the creative realm. Father, teach us to steward our gifts well and trust you in the offering. In Jesus name, amen.