Art is a gift from God. I'm convinced it's His provision for us to express what is left of His image in us. Sin has done a number on us, and though I don't pretend to grasp the full impact of our total depravity, I'm grateful we still retain this amazing, God-given desire to capture and express the inexplicable. Like preschoolers painting with their fingers, we attempt to imitate God's eternal, creative, artistic nature. Psalm 92:5 says, "How great are your works, O LORD, how profound your thoughts!" (NIV)
I see this in George Frederic Handel's Messiah, in Winslow Homer's amazing paintings, Leonardo Da Vinci's sculptures, and the architecture of great churches. I marvel at a well-told story in film and a photograph that seems to speak. When I listen to great musicians, I marvel at the skill and giftedness with which they perform. Even more, I marvel when they seem to genuinely perform for an audience of one, the Lord. I'm convinced that Christians have a high calling to recapture the arts for God's glory. Writing, painting, producing films, composing songs, and a host of other creative endeavors must be pursued by believers for one reason--to glorify our Creator God.
This desire to create is much like a child who stops playing with a toy when she sees the long embrace of her father and mother in tender love. That little child loses all awareness of the toy and runs to the embrace. She squeezes between them, clinging to both. Why? She was made for intimacy, even though she may not fully understanding what it is. She yearns for it and is magnetically drawn to it.
In a similar childlike way, we yearn to express worship and praise for the Lord Jesus. One day we'll know fullness of intimacy with Him in His glory and His presence. This is when the fingerpaintings that we call masterpieces give way to the most creative place ever imagined, heaven. Won't it be wonderful on that day, to be in His presence and see something strangely familiar? We walk toward it, driven by curiosity and need, then realize that it is something we created while on earth. We're now embarrassed at its childish simplicity, but a sense of overwhelming love fills us as we see what we made hanging on the Lord's refrigerator?
Celebrate art, and in doing so you prepare for the reason we were given creativity as a gift--to glorify the Creative One who made us.