June 22, 2012

Creative Calling – June

You are unique.  God made you that way.  We all have different gifts and talents.  For those of us with creative gifts it is so easy to compare ourselves and our art with others.

If you’ve taken art history or strolled a museum or gallery, you have probably thought, like I have, that there is no way your art would ever measure up to the standards of the masters.

The feeling of inadequacy kept me from attending art school for many years.  Even though I knew God had given me a passion, I did not have the faith that I was good enough to make any kind of difference in the art world.

I have a desk plaque.  I got it when I worked as a graphic artist years ago.  It has my name and title.  Rebekah Bell – Artist.  I kept the plaque when I left that job and it wasn’t until then that it came to mean something special to me.  You see, before that job I had no confidence in myself as an artist.  But I loved art!  God provided that job for me and used it to build me up and inspire me to study art further.  When I left that is just what I did.  Whenever I look at it now, I remember the path the Lord took me to give me that confidence.

The truth is, I’m not good enough, none of us are.  There is a verse that is often taken out of context, we say it to each other for comfort, “God doesn’t give you what you can’t handle”.  Really that’s not the whole truth.  God doesn’t give you what you can’t handle IN HIM.  Philippians 4:13 says “I can do all this through him who gives me strength.”  It’s all about Him!  It’s not about what we can accomplish in life, it’s about doing what we are called to do for Christ, and relying on Him to get it done.

When we let go of prideful thinking, and yes, insecurity is pride!  We open up the door for God to use us.

“Humble yourself before Him.”  James 4:10

Pride is not pleasing to God, it is imperative that we humble ourselves before him, because “apart from him, we can do nothing.” John 15:4-5

We not only need to humble ourselves before God, we need to humble ourselves before others.

Luke 17:10 reminds us that when we use our gifts for him, “we have only done our duty.”  This verse is not saying it’s wrong to feel good about ourselves or what we have made.  We should take pleasure in pleasing God, that should be an ambition, but when we receive compliments on our work we need to learn to receive them with grace and humility.

What is your motivation for creating?  Is it to glorify God or yourself?  Jeremiah 45:5 says “should you then seek great things for yourself?  Seek them not.”

If we are truly ministering in the name of Jesus, our motivation should be Him and His glory.

“Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit, but in humility consider others better than yourselves.  Each of you should look not only to your own interests, but also to the interests of others.” Philippians 4:3-4

If you create for God’s glory, there is no need to compare yourself with other artists or have insecurity.  You simply follow God’s leading, and create what He reveals to you.

“Always give yourself fully to the work of the Lord, because you know that our labor in the Lord is not in vain.”  1 Corinthians 15:58

The work that we do as artists is the work of the Lord.

Can you begin to see yourself as God sees you?  As the artist you are?  Get yourself a plaque if you need it J

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