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Are You Devaluing Your Creative Calling?

Are You Devaluing Your Creative Calling?

As a Christian creative, I’ve struggled at times (let me be honest, A LOT) with undervaluing the very talents and artistic expression that God has graced me with. Perhaps you can relate to that sense of insecurity or feeling that your work lacks importance compared to others. We may create solely for the joy of it, without giving much thought to the value our art brings to the world. Or we might subconsciously downplay our gifts to avoid coming across as boastful or arrogant, which seems to go against the core value of humility.

However, I’ve come to realize that devaluing our creative callings is actually an affront to the One who bestowed those treasured abilities upon us. God has entrusted each of us with unique talents to steward for His glory and the enrichment of others. Whether our creative impact reaches millions or just a handful, it still carries profound worth. This doesn’t mean we can’t intentionally choose generosity and charity, but the question remains is that fueled by a generous spirit or a spirit that does not accept our own value and the value of what we create. It’s easy to be generous with something we think is trash.

The Scriptures remind us in 1 Peter 4:10, “Each of you should use whatever gift you have received to serve others, as faithful stewards of God’s grace in its various forms.” Our creativity is a form of this grace, bestowed not to be diminished or hidden, but to be fully expressed and shared.

Throughout history, artistic giants have spoken to the importance of valuing one’s work with integrity.

“No matter what your work is, let it be good work, and not poor and indifferent. No matter how humble, let that humble thing be ennobled by your care for it.” – Harriet Hosmer’s essay “The Process of Sculpture”

Even the business world validates not underselling your abilities, as leadership expert John C. Maxwell stated, “If you can’t get motivated by your purpose, you likely won’t value it or take pride in it.”

For us as purpose-driven, Christ-centered creatives, our purpose is to use the gifts we’ve been blessed with to glorify God, strengthen fellow believers, and reach untold others with the truth and beauty of His Kingdom. When we downplay those creative talents, we risk minimizing the eternal impact and influence we were entrusted to have.

So let us operate from a posture of humble confidence as Christian artists, musicians, writers, and creatives, honoring the immense value of our callings without arrogance or selfishness. Let us celebrate how the Creator continues to work through our artistic expressions to leave an eternal legacy, whether our influence touches millions or just one soul in need of His hope and truth. Our value is measured not by worldly definitions of success, but by the God who purposefully shaped us to enrich many lives through our art for such a pivotal time as this.

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Is Christian Art Limited to Gospel Messaging?

Is Christian Art Limited to Gospel Messaging?

“The Christian is the really free man—he is free to have imagination. This too is our heritage. The Christian is the one whose imagination should fly beyond the stars.”- Francis Schaeffer

Today I was able to dive into Frank Schaeffers powerful book, “Art and the Bible.” I’m sharing it here primarily to recommend it for all Christian artists. And be sure that it will be oft quoted in my course Unleashing Christ-Centered Creativity (Course 2 in a 3 course education pathway coming soon).

Francis offers a fresh look at the role of art in the Christian life. One of the most striking lessons I took away is Schaeffer’s belief that Christian art doesn’t have to be limited to obvious gospel messages or evangelistic themes. Instead, he encourages a liberated view of artistic expression, where beauty and creativity can blossom as a reflection of our deep faith in Christ.

Schaeffer’s insights challenge the idea that Christian art must always be a tool for salvation or an overt gospel proclamation. Just as nature’s grandeur can inspire awe, or an abstract piece can spark joy, art can celebrate our creative minds – a reflection of the Divine Artist who crafted the cosmos. In simply pointing to beauty we offer people a front row seat to the work of God’s hands.

Yet, Schaeffer also acknowledges that art is inevitably shaped by the artist’s worldview, whether conscious or not. He identifies four types of artistic expressions:

1. Art created by Christians with a Christian worldview

2. Art created by non-Christians with a non-Christian worldview

3. Art created by non-Christians who share beliefs aligned with Christian values

4. Art created by Christians who, sadly, reflect a non-Christian worldview due to a lack of understanding of their faith’s implications.

It’s this last category that Schaeffer finds most disheartening as do I. The Christian artist who has yet to fully grasp the transformative power of their faith, resulting in art that fails to reflect the truth and beauty of the Christian worldview.

Ultimately, Schaeffer’s work is an invitation to embrace artistic expression as a core part of our identity as Christians. Whether through poetry, painting, music, or the very way we live our lives, we’re encouraged to create without fear, allowing our imaginations to soar while remaining rooted in the richness of our faith in Jesus.

“No artwork is more important than the Christian’s own life, and every Christian is called to be an artist in this sense.” – Francis Schaeffer

As I reflect on Schaeffer’s insights, I’m inspired to unleash the artist within, celebrating beauty and creativity as a testament to the Master Creator who fashioned us in His image.

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