Myriads of Inspiration
I happen to be a big fan of art. Anything that can communicate something with the use of some kind of visual representative or arrangement I consider to be very cool. The use of words, whether in a poem that creatively arranges words in order to communicate something greater, or an underlying theme, or just an array of words that provoke thoughts or feelings or anything. A picture that actually "says" words or symbolizes a story, feeling or emotion. Music that creates atmospheres of all sorts. I absolutely love creativity. And I admire anyone who can create these types of things, whether a painter or photographer or musician or actor.
Of all the categories of art, I suppose I would consider my self in the music category. But I don't consider myself to be much of an "artist" yet, meaning I do not write tons of songs or anything, although I am working on it. Sometimes I feel as if I have no inspiration. A lot of people write songs about significant others, of which I have no material for yet, or love, or even political stuff. But at the same time I have more inspiration than I could ever need. Being a worship leader, not only am I crazy passionate about music, but I am also passionate about God. When those things come together, it's my favorite. If you have read some of my older blogs, you know I crave creativity in the arena of worship, specifically music. Music by itself communicates and connects with us greatly, and also words by themselves communicate and connect, and when they come together to communicate the same idea, it's the coolest thing ever.
I have been reading through a book called Vintage Jesus. In part of the book, Mark Driscoll talks about Jesus' influence on the world of art. It's interesting to see how Jesus was an inspiration to some of histories greatest artists:
With the Bible teaching that God is both Creator and creative and that
God created us to be creative like him, it is not surprising to see the great
connection between Jesus and many of the greatest artists in the history
of the world.
In architecture, cathedrals are widely appreciated as some of the
most inspiring places on the earth. In the world of music, the works of
Bach, Handel, and Vivaldi, along with the many great hymns of the faith,
all flowed out of the fount of inspiration from Jesus. In art, Christians
such as Michelangelo, Raphael, and Leonardo da Vinci remain the standard
by which all others are measured. In literature, Dante, Chaucer,
Shakespeare, Donne, Dostoevsky, Bunyan, Milton, Dickens, Tolstoy,
Eliot, Lewis, Tolkien, Sayers, and Solzhenitsyn all wrote out of their
faith and were greatly influenced by Christianity.
I remember leading worship in a very old church in a downtown area of a small town in Missouri. The church was pretty big, and the inside had high ceilings and stain glass everywhere. It was only me and my guitar, and it was one of the most memorable worship times I can think of. I remember at one moment a man closer to the back of the sanctuary was laying face down in the middle of the isle. That in itself is something you see in worship services today. At the back of the church was a big round stain glass window and the light came through almost perfectly on the man in the isle. It was a very cool picture. It's crazy how even the architecture of a building can have such a huge role in worship. Churches and cathedrals back in the day were designed like they were on purpose. Usually they would have pillars in the middle so that they could put more windows around the church, full of stain glass that often portrayed pictures of God's grace or redemption. As light shined through, it was a symbol of God coming down to meet them in that place, since God is light (1 John1:5). And they would often had high pointy roofs and such to symbolize humans reaching up to God, and also God's transcendence.
How awesome is it when so many things come together for one purpose and create a myriad of inspiration that points to the glory of God and enhances our worship.
It encompasses so many senses and emotions. I hope to one day create some type of atmosphere in our culture today that would have the same effect. And I hope to one day be able to create art that is inspired by the thing I love most, much like the great artists of the past who were so greatly influenced by Jesus. But I can't do it by my own means.
-thanks for reading