I have to say, I love what I do and because of that I feel really blessed. I get to create for a living. In the early days of my career, I always figured the only way I would get to do that was if I became a professional artist. To tell you the truth, pursuing that was one of the most frustrating periods of my life. It always seemed like it was feast or famine, the jobs I had paid the bills, but I can’t say I was ever really creatively fulfilled. I now understand why that was. God had something different for me, and in many ways, something better. Now that’s not to say that ministry is better than art. If you’re called to art, do art and do it to the glory of God.

I think deep down inside, I was making assumptions. I was creative and I had a gift for art, therefore God must be calling me to be an artist and so I worked and worked and strove to be an artist full time, professionally, and I always felt pretty stuck and unfulfilled. The thing is if I had been paying attention, I would have realized there was something different in store for me. I’ve been using art as a ministry tool for almost two decades, but I still kind of thought I would make my actual living as a professional artist/designer/etc. True I even pastored a church for almost decade, but it was a very part time pay and an almost full time ministry, but I still relied on something else to pay the bills. The thing is God wants us to rely on Him.

I had to have some help to get to that point. The church closed and God led me to a wonderful church to heal and recover. I started to go out speaking and figured I would do that part time and continue relying on another job for my income. Then the door closed on the job too. Now I didn’t have a choice. I had to rely on the Lord. He opened the door for more speaking and then he led me to a church who needed an interim pastor. It was during my slow speaking time, so I said sure, I can do anything for a couple months. Something strange happened. I fell in love with the people of this church and they showed me they love me too. It didn’t take long to remove “interim” from my title. Here’s the thing. I am making more art, than I ever did as I illustrate my messages for the power points. I am teaching painting through my paint parties. My pastorate is “3/4 time” which means I have a little more free time, and during that time, I create all kinds of other things for my speaking ministry, which I also usually end up sharing with my church. I am writing more and creating more and one last thing, I’m generally pretty happy and fulfilled.

Why do I share this? I share this today for the person who is feeling unfulfilled creatively. For the person who thinks they’re not good enough at their art, because they’re not making a living at it. I guess I am posting what I wish I would have read when I was going through all that same stuff. God has a plan and a purpose for you. Believe it. What if you did your art just for the love of art and incidentally for the love of God? What if you moved forward in faithfulness and relied on God to put you in the right places and the right times?

One last thing, none of the other things during those times when I felt really unfulfilled were wasted. I learned skills that benefit me to this day and I learned to appreciate the life I have now. It’s an amazing blessing, but it’s not always easy and there are times where I am working really hard for long hours. All the things I’ve done in life give me a greater appreciation for all that I have.

Do what you do for the love of it. Work at what is before you like you’re doing it for God and rely on Him to take you where He wants you to be.

Advertisements
Comments
  1. Elana says:

    Well said, Dave! Thanks for sharing! Jennie Allen’s book Restless is a great one to help one figure out their “calling”—art related or not. I’m also enjoying the book titled Artisan Soul by Erwin McManus.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

w

Connecting to %s