Harmony is not Death
When we think about bringing our faith and art careers together, we experience a little trepidation because of what we think we have to change or give up. Marlita eases that fear by showing how God has us right where He wants us.
Welcome to The Kingdom Art Life, Episode 3
In episode 2, I talked about the conviction that guides how we serve artists here at KAI – that conviction being that any art life can be a vessel for worship and leave a kingdom footprint and culture. At the beginning of every episode, I state our goal, which is helping you build harmony between your faith, your art, and your career life. Actually, those two things go together : ANY art life can be a vessel for worship and leave a kingdom footprint in culture when there is harmony between faith, art, and career.
When there is harmony between faith, art, and career –
regardless of what you make art about,
where you create and present it,
who you present it with or for –
any art life can be a vessel for worship and leave a Kingdom footprint in culture.
Now, this is LIBERATING because when we, as professional artists think about bringing our faith and art together, we feel like we have to change it somehow to make it more acceptable and palatable for Christian living. And, what I’m telling you is that you don’t have to do that; I mean, unless the Holy Spirit explicitly tells you to. Otherwise, you don’t have to change what you talk about.
You don’t have to start adding things to make it more Christian.
You don’t have to change who you work with. Besides being liberating, though, why would harmony be important for you and I?
Well, let me ask you this: do you like feeling conflicted between your faith walk and your art career?
Do you like being unsure about whether God is pleased with your art?
Do you enjoy being unsure about how to be your full self around people who live differently than you do?
Would you like to live fully in all parts of who you are, without constantly having to make sure certain parts of you don’t slip out and environments they “shouldn’t?”
Well then you need harmony.
And, since this utopia hinges on harmony, we better understand what harmony is. We know about musical harmony, but we are going to go a step deeper than that. The word harmony means agreement or accord. It’s about becoming one mind through the settling of differences in opinion, action, wil,l and purpose. In the Word of God, we find a model for what harmony should look like.
Romans 8:29 says, “for whom He foreknew He also predestined to be conformed to the image of His Son; that He might be the firstborn among many brethren.”
When you and I got saved, when we came to Christ, God had something more in mind for us than just getting saved and going to heaven. A major part of our Christian walk is spiritual development, where we more and more begin to resemble Christ. He was not to be the only one to walk the earth looking like He did or acting like He did.
One of the ways we look like Him is found in Philippians 2:5: “Let this mind be in you that was also in Christ Jesus.”
We find an aspect of His mind, and the basis for our model for harmony in John 10:30, where He says I and my Father are one.
In John 12:45, Jesus says, “whoever sees Me sees the One who sent Me.”
In John 5:19, He says that He only does what He sees the father doing; and that whatever He sees the father doing, He does also.
So, Jesus sees the Father do something; and He does the same thing He saw the Father do, as He saw the Father do it. And, because Jesus did that, whoever is looking at Him is looking at the Father – because He did what He saw the Father do.
The reason they do that is because They are one. They’re in harmony. They are of one mind in purpose, in will, in action, and in speech.
If you and I are supposed to have the mind of Christ,
if we’re supposed to look like what Christ looked like,
and they are one in harmony,
and this is what they’re harmony looks like,
then this is what our harmony should look like also.
We have to come to the same mind about our career and our place, as children of God, in mainstream culture. We have to come to one mind with God about the purpose of having us there.
We have to come to one mind with God about what we’re supposed to do while we’re there.
And, we have to come to one mind with God about how we’re to do things there.
And that doesn’t mean that you have to change what you’re doing as an artist.
It doesn’t mean that you suddenly have to change what you make art about,
who you collaborate with artistically,
who the audience is that consumes your work.
You don’t have to change that just because you come to the same mind with God…again, unless He tells you to.
Because here’s the thing: God put you there in mainstream culture.
The whole reason you feel pulled there is because God purposed for you to be there.
In your prayer time, you say God, use me. I want to do your will. God, show me what to do.
And even after praying that, you still see the same thing.
You say God, use me and you still see contemporary art.
You say God, I want to do Your will and you still keep hearing R&B lyrics in your spirit, not worship songs.
You say God, take my heart. I’m available to You and you still see the movie that has not a bit of Christianese in it.
Could it be possible that that is the will of God for you?
Could it be possible that He has answered you time and time again. but you didn’t recognize it? Or were afraid to accept it as Him?
Could it be possible that, all along, you have been hearing His mind and His heart about where your art life should be…and what it should look like; even though it doesn’t look like what a “Christian’s” art life should look like?
Harmony is about coming to one mind, then seeing and moving from that one mind.
It’s about creating your art from that one mind.
Managing your career from that one mind.
Engaging with culture from that one mind.
TALK TO ME
Where do you see yourself in this harmony thing? Is it something that is easy for you to accept? Can you implement it easily? Is it a little hard to accept? Do you need more clarity? Let me know.