Episode 22: A Picture of Wholeness, Pt. 1
In episode 22, we explore what it looks like to take our creative life off the fringes and embrace it as an essential part of our faith experience.
Hello, hello, hello. Welcome to season 2 of the Kingdom Art Life Podcast. My name is Marlita Hill and I am excited to help you flourish in faith, art, and career.
Our last podcast was March of 2017. Wow!!! What a year and some change that’s been. I only meant to take a short break but God and life had other plans, which I’ll definitely be sharing more about over our time together this season. But, the big news that I want to share with you is that I published my third book in January. The title is Defying Discord: Ending the divide between your faith and “secular” art career. If you enjoy this podcast, you’ll love the book, which you can purchase on my site at marlitahill.com.
Alright, enough of that.
So over this past year and a half, the Spirit of God has really refined KAI’S place in this conversation about faith and art. Again, KAI stands for Kingdom Artist Initiative, and it’s the program I developed through which I support artists in Christ working in secular culture, like yourself. I do that through workshops, mentoring, this podcast, my books, retreats, courses, and other things.
And the mission that has really settled in my heart in working with artists of faith is to minister into two relationships in their lives: the first is the relationship between their faith, art, and career, and the second is the relationship between them, as artists, and God.
This is why I’m so excited to connect with you!!
Because my desire is for these relationships in your life to be healed and healthy, reciprocal, thriving and deepening. But to have that, there are some things we need to be freed from, things we need to shift our mind about, things that we need to peel off, and things we need to be reacquainted with.
Now there are three pillars to these healthy relationships.
The first is wholeness. This is about you being able to fully embrace all parts of who you are as an artist in Christ.
The second is liberty. This is about you being able to stand unapologetically in the kind of art life God has led and positioned you to build.
And the third pillar is harmony. This is about faith, art, and career being allowed to thrive alongside one another, at the same time in the same space, as they work together in your life.
Season 2 will be about digging into these three pillars, understanding what blocks them, what empowers them, and how to receive and walk in them so that you can flourish in a healthy, undivided relationship between your art and faith life.
So, let’s get to it!!
What does wholeness look like for artists in Christ working, or pursuing a career in secular culture? What does it look like for you to fully embrace all parts of who you are in this station?
I looked up the word whole and there were two definitions that really stood out for me. The first one is an organization of parts fitting and working together as one, which we’ll get more into in our harmony conversation. The second definition is not leaving any part out.
Not leaving any part out.
What does that look like?
Well, as artists in Christ working in secular culture, we’re essentially made up of three parts.
There’s the Christian part of us. We are believers, followers of Christ.
There’s the creative part of us. We make art or work in the artistic sector.
And, there’s the part of us that is a cultural participant. We participate in secular culture through our art making and career.
So what, then, does it look like for all three of those parts to be brought into every aspect of our experience as an artist in Christ working in secular culture, in every context that we occupy as such? I have 3 pictures of this wholeness that I want to share with you; one in this episode and two in the next.
The first picture of this wholeness is bringing your whole self (that’s all three parts) to your faith walk. This means not denying that you are an artist, that you are a creative person. It means not diminishing, or putting away, or only relegating your creative self to the fringes of your life – but embracing this as a vital part of the way God has designed you. It means embracing this part of you as essential to the fabric of your life and essential to the fabric of your relationship with God. And if its essential to the fabric, then it has an important place in your life and it has an important place in your relationship with God. And that means that your creative life should not be treated as any less than important in either place, and should have an active role in both places.
Bringing your whole self to your faith walk also means embracing your creative self, your creative lens as a way that God has gifted you to experience and engage in this world, and as a way to process, embody, express, and participate in your faith.
It also means embracing your career in secular culture as the place that God, Himself, who is the author and finisher of your faith, has planted you in to put that creative gift to work. That your participation in your faith walk includes your career life…yes, even your kind of career. It means accepting that as you engage as an artist in secular culture, making the kind of art you make , God is in you, He is with you, He is for you, and is also working through you to make Himself known and to build his Kingdom.
It means accepting that you, as the kind of artist you are, contribute to building the Kingdom and you are a needed member of the Kingdom community.
It means embracing yourself as a person of faith who is creative and takes space in secular culture.
And it means your artistry and career are an important way you participate in faith, and engage in the larger faith community.
So that’s what it looks like to bring your whole self to your faith walk.
Before you go, please join our discussion below.
And until next time, be whole, walk free, live harmoniously!