ChiRho Newsletter February 2017

 

“Marble Cross Medallion” acrylic painting,  January 2017 © by Donna Gonzalez

Yey! February is here! That means that spring is coming soon! Michiganders know all too well winter is akin to roadway construction  – seemingly without end in sight. Still February to me seems like a month walled in on either side by bookends, of blustery wintry January on one end and the beginning of spring-like weather in late March on the other. I look forward to the warm summers. 

And isn’t that what the Church is in? Is not the Body of Christ between two great Advent bookends? The Church existing having a hope and purpose nestled between His first and second coming. All the while keeping Christ centered like in the painting above it looks to a more glorious Day.

Until then we as Christian artists are called to continue to do our part in the Kingdom of God. We are given the two greatest commandments by Jesus to love first and foremost the Lord our God with all our heart, mind, soul and strength and then to love our neighbor as ourselves  Luke 10:27.  We are to go out and fulfill the Great Commission in His name by making disciples  Matthew 28:16-20.  Be good stewards of all we have using the talents given us for His glory. Matthew 25:14-30 and then continue abiding in Him maturing in Him as we develop the gifts of the Holy Spirit. All the while of course finding time to be with our spouses, children, families, work, church, etc. So much to do and so little time! 

Is it possible to combine all of this?  Francis A. Schaeffer seems to hint at it in his book Art and the Bible:

“A Christian should use these arts to the glory of God, not just as tracts, mind you, but as things of beauty to the praise of God. An art work can be a doxology in itself.” 

Undoubtedly artists have and are already doing this. But how do we accomplish a doxology along with fulfilling the above commands of Jesus? At first glance it appears rather difficult to achieve. But I don’t think it has to be.

Have you ever considered that perhaps what our Lord Jesus has given us is not just another list of commands to obey to be compartmentalized away separately from our secular work but rather in fact can be used as a succinct purpose statement similar to an elevator pitch?

By combining the greatest commandment, the royal law, the great commission and specifying our God-given talent gives the Christian a unique personalized statement that results in others giving thanks and praise to God.    

For example my life purpose statement would be:

My purpose in life is to love the Lord my God with all my heart, soul, strength and mind and to love others as myself. [Greatest Commandment & Royal Law] One way I love others is by sharing the Gospel [Great Commission] and by pointing others to Him through my artwork. [Fill in blank with specific God-given talent/skill]

This purpose statement can be used for any skill a Christian may have not just the creative arts. For some it may re-define more clearly the position Christians need to be in to impact their world for Christ. For some it may reveal whether or not Christ is the priority or something else. For those overwhelmed it can bring confidence that this goal is actually quite achievable.

Whether it is the Christian in the film industry, or one who sings backup on Broadway, to the forgotten lunchroom janitor, to the hospitality maid, the doctor, or the homeless one sleeping on a street corner every one of us has been gifted by a generous God to use their gift for the benefit of others that God may be glorified Matthew 5:16. 

Just as the cross is in the center focal point of the painting “Marble Cross Medallion” may we be gently reminded to love God and put Him first in all we do putting into proper perspective our talent.  And while we wait expectantly between two great bookends may we be greatly encouraged that our life’s unique purpose isn’t just only for the present but will result in an eternal reward and a beautiful doxology unto God.marble-mosaic-medallion1-prints

“Marble Cross Medallion” acrylic painting,  January 2017 © by Donna Gonzalez

 

 

 

 

 

 

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