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A Celebration, A Concern, and A Calling!

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Introduction

A Celebration, A Concern, and A Calling! A Celebration! Strike up the band! Get the confetti ready! Pull out the chips and salsa! Let the celebration begin! The arts are back in the church! That's right folks, there is a revival going on across the nation. Churches everywhere are embracing the arts with a renewed fire and passion. Praise the Lord for His infinite creativity. But wait, it gets better. The church is welcoming a diverse selection of artistic gifts and reaching beyond the expected and familiar to brave new frontiers. Spend a month visiting different churches in you area and you may be surprised at the art forms you experience in worship. Dance, painting, sculpting, graphic design, poetry, music from different cultures and styles, strange and wonderful instruments from far away places, and yes, drama. No longer content to follow the masses, the church universal is beginning to lead again, to be innovative and cutting edge creative. There are so many reasons to celebrate. A Concern... On the front lines of this movement, there are also some faint rumblings, murmurs, and whispers that are cause for concern. ...read more.

Middle

In Philippians 2:1-4 Paul teaches us a great lesson about ministry. "If you have any encouragement from being united with Christ, if any comfort from his love, if any fellowship with the Spirit, if any tenderness and compassion, then make my joy complete by being like-minded, having the same love, being one in spirit and purpose. Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit, but in humility consider others better than yourselves. Each of you should look not only to your own interests, but also to the interests of others. In our zeal to celebrate the arts, we have begun to neglect the ministry. When we prioritize the importance of the "art" of drama, or any other art, above ministering to people and striving for unity, we do nothing to further His kingdom. Our efforts become chaff that blows away in the wind and burns up in the fire. We find ourselves viewing people as stumbling blocks on the road to perfecting our "art". How many times, even in jest, have I said "I love ministry, it's the people I can't stand."? ...read more.

Conclusion

God sees us as mighty warriors reclaiming His stolen property. In Judges, Chapter 6, we find the account of Gideon. God finds Gideon threshing wheat in a wine press - hiding. Imagine how helpless and powerless Gideon must have felt. The enemy surrounds him, he has to sneak around to feed his family, in his eyes...he is the least of the least. And here comes The Angel of the Lord...calling him a mighty warrior. My friends, as small as we may feel, artists are mighty warriors for the Lord. We are called to take back stolen property...the arts. Judges 6:25-26 "...Tear down your father's altar to Baal and cut down the Asherah pole beside it. Then build a proper kind of altar to the Lord your God on the top of this bluff. Using the wood of the Asherah pole that you cut down, offer the second bull as a burnt offering." God called Gideon to reclaim His stolen property. We can tear down the altar society has built to worship the arts, and use drama to worship our Father God, the Heavenly Artist. We can offer our art as a sacrifice of worship. When we begin to do this...the celebrating truly begins! ...read more.

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