Monday, May 21, 2018
The Arts and the Christian - Part I (Maybe!)
Today, The Wiffee and I finally got around to seeing the movie, I Can Only Imagine. It's a surprisingly well-made film that tells the story of Bart Millard, the fellow who wrote the title song after a childhood plagued by an abusive father.
The song touched many people who were in Bart's situation. As a Christian dinosaur, it was obvious God used Bart's experiences to create a healing song.
The movie started me thinking about my own "career" as a fine artist. I've tried for a long time to turn it into a full-time, bill-paying job -- without success. I kept asking myself if painting was something I was meant to do or not.
That's when I have to ask myself what God's purpose is when He gives artistic / creative people the gift of loving the visual arts, music, writing, whatever so much that the person feels a need to create art.
The Bible makes it pretty clear that artistic ability is granted by God (it's in Exodus -- more on that another time). Yet -- the Lord never promised that we as artists would be financially successful at it, or even artistically successful with it.
But I do believe we honor Him by using our creative gifts, whether it sells or not. This is a point I often forget when I'm feeling discouraged and want to quit the art thing entirely. I don't think God wants me to quit painting. Keep creating, even if He is the only One who ever sees it. If it sells someday, great. But for reasons known only to Him, some artists will profit from their skills, and many others won't.
So for now, the plan is keep painting for as long as I can, until I ran out of canvases and panels to paint on. I may retrieve some unsold paintings that I could white out and paint something different on them. When I'm TOTALLY out of paint and / or surfaces...well, I'll have to see what happens next.
The Bible verse for dinos like me to live by is from 1 Corinthians 10:31: "Whether therefore you eat or drink or whatsoever you do*, do all to the glory of God."
*That includes painting!