Archive for January 31, 2020

I spend a lot of time in my van, driving from place to place, and one of the things I love to do is listen to podcasts. Among my favorites is Dan Miller’s 48 Days to the Work You Love. Now for the record, I have found work that I love, but Dan shares a lot of great principles that I am hoping to apply to the work that I do both in the arts and in the church. Well I was listening to some of his older episodes last week, when he mentioned a book that I would love to read. The problem was when I looked the title up online, there were several books with the same title, and I needed to know which one it was so I sent him an email. I added some words about how I have indeed found the work I love, but that I was still really being blessed by what he is doing, and he read my email on the Podcast. I was thrilled.

Later he shared another listener’s question. He asked for listeners to respond to what the listener said. Well it was so much in my wheelhouse that I had to respond. Here’s what I wrote.

Hi Dan,
Dave Weiss here from First of all thank you for reading my good news piece on your podcast last week. I was thrilled to hear you share it. I then listened with great interest to the young lady who wrote about glory to self versus glory to God and wanting to do a secular career but worrying that it won’t glorify God. I want to say for the record, that a lot of the art I do these days, is done in and for the church, but not all of it and I think God is not just okay with that, I think he is setting up the opportunities and He is glorified.

First of all, not all of the work I do in live paintings in churches is traditionally Christian. I do have a presentation called Pictures of Jesus, where I paint pictures of Jesus, but I have a piece on God’s creation in which I paint a giant bug. I have another presentation on imagination where I paint two versions of Edvard Munch’s the Scream, and a presentation I do on forgiveness featuring a piece I adapted from an idea I got while looking at a Pink Floyd album cover. In my presentation graphics, I love to use cartoons and other kinds of humorous illustration. The point is, the only way I can do what I do, is to constantly be working out new ideas with diverse subject matter.

Secondly, I don’t just work in the church. Part of our calling as Christians is to share our faith with those outside the church. As such I want to do work that allows me to speak to the arts community. My earliest artistic influences were the guys who did the wild creatures driving wild cars, like Ed “Big Daddy” Roth and I still love to do that kind of work. I love cartooning, pop art and what they call “low brow art,” and one of the things I love to do is to share that work online both on my site, Beware of Artists and on various Facebook groups as well as in Zazzle shops and I would love if that became a way to generate passive income eventually, and I make some efforts toward that end, but for now, my main purpose is just to open the door to building relationships with other artists and enthusiasts and just generally getting to know people.

From time to time I will enter into monthly challenges where they give a prompt each day for a month and I create a new piece each day. They frequently create opportunities for conversation. Last year, one of these challenges opened the door for me to share a video message with a group of youth in Croatia. When I was focused on making art a career, I ended up very frustrated at times. Now, even though I am called to ministry, I know part of that ministry is using my gifts in any opportunity God provides, whether that’s “secular” or “Christian.” I would direct the young lady to three passages 1 Peter 4:10 which says “Each one should use WHATEVER gifts he has received to serve others, faithfully administering God’s grace in it’s various forms.” Ephesians 5:15 and 16 “15 Be very careful, then, how you live—not as unwise but as wise, 16 making the most of EVERY opportunity, because the days are evil.”and finally Proverbs 22:29 “Do you see someone skilled in their work? They will serve before kings; they will not serve before officials of low rank.” God is not just the God of the church, He is God of all. He can be glorified in anything He calls us to do, whether it is in the church, the marketplace or both. In closing I would remind her of the words of St. Irenaeus, who said “The glory of God is man fully alive.” All true gifts come from God, we need to put them to use and trust God to do what He will in them.

God bless and thanks again,
Dave Weiss