The church needs creativity now more than ever.

Each day people are bombarded by hundreds of messages…
but one is most important. The Gospel of Jesus Christ. We in the church have been entrusted with taking that message to the ends of the earth. How do we stand out among the noise and get their attention? The good news is God has gifted people with gifts and talents designed to do just that. Some of them are in our churches and some are beyond our walls.

My name is Dave Weiss. I’m an artist, a pastor and a speaker, but it wasn’t always that way. Oh I’ve been an artist for as long as I can remember, but I’m in the ministry today because of two things. Someone cared enough to introduce me to Jesus Christ, and a pastor found my gift of art as showed me how I could use my gift to serve the Lord. That was transformational.

My passion is to help people find and use their gifts to serve the Lord both in the church and in the market place and to help the church to embrace Creativity. I do workshops, Gospel presentations and more to creatively encourage and build up the Body of Christ. I’d love to work with you and your church. Contact me today!

The Blog starts below!

Where’s the Joy?

Posted: August 10, 2022 in Uncategorized

So I’m watching a Christian movie, and it’s not bad, but why do we have to take the main characters so far down before we can lift them up. I was getting so depressed, but then I realized it’s not all that unrealistic. I know the depths I fell to and where the Lord brought me from. That’s redemption. But it’s not just that. I have looked at the world and all that is going on, and I can go to dark places too, even now as a man of faith. I am redeemed and yet I still see the need tor redemption all around me. It can be overwhelming but that’s kind of the point.

We can’t do this on our own. We need the Redeemer. This world needs Jesus but there is something else they need. They need joy. We can’t afford to wallow in the dark places, the joy of the Lord is our strength. We can acknowledge that the darkness, but we need to remember to walk in the light, because darkness is conquered, every single time by light. Jesus is the light of the world. In Him is light and that light is the life of all mankind. We need to rest in Him, trust in Him, find His joy, point the world to its Redeemer and we need to shine with His light.  

Every so often publishers will send me emails offering review copies of their latest offerings. When I saw the title Crazy Joy, I was automatically drawn to it and asked for a copy. You see of late, things happening in our world have been weighing on me and maybe even stealing my joy. I figured I needed to read this book. When I review books, I will often look up the author just to find more about them and I did so with Ms. Backstrom. I found some things that showed we would likely have some pretty major disagreements. I became worried specifically because of the sub title of the book: “Finding wild happiness in a world that’s upside down.” I began to wonder what if she spends her time on what is upside down and the things she thinks are upside down are what I think is right side up? Would I finish this book crazy but without the joy I have been seeking?

I considered not reading the book, but seeing as how I hate cancel culture with the white hot passion of a thousand suns, I decided it would be best not to engage in it. I determined to read the book. I am glad I did. I finished it in two days. This book is devoid of controversy but instead deals with the matter at hand, helping people to find joy and she does it masterfully. This book is chock full of humorous and poignant stories from the author’s life (and a few other sources) that meld beautifully with the point she is making. If you are a person who is struggling to find joy, this is a book for you. It is well written, thought provoking and joy invoking. I thoroughly enjoyed it, and it reminded me of something else, that I know pretty well but that is missing in much of our society. We don’t have to agree on every point to gain from each other. What we need to do is learn to understand each other, “hear” each other out, disagree agreeably and love our neighbors. I think we’d find a lot more joy in life if we did. Nice work Ms. Backstrom.

What Do You Do?

Posted: August 6, 2022 in Uncategorized

As many of you know, I am working on my doctorate through Kingdom Bible College and Seminary. In the process of my research, I came upon a book from a major expert on creativity. I haven’t gotten very far. In the introductory chapters, he speaks of God as if He is something we created to help us understand the things going on in the world, and basically asserts that as humanity’s creativity advanced, we no longer had the need for a god. I wanted to throw the book out the window, but it’s on my Kindle Fire and I’d just as soon not wreck that. I thought about quitting the book, and yet I am struggling. I’m not ashamed to admit the man’s point of view frustrates me, but is there still something to be learned from his research and scholarship? I’m really torn. I know there are many in the arts who would happily share his point of view, and many in the world who would see my reaction as narrow minded, but I am sorry, I know my Creator and I believe any creativity I have has been endowed on me by my Creator. To see God belittled as a figment of my imagination is hurtful and for the context of the book completely unnecessary. The book is not assigned reading or anything like that. It is just a book that comes well recommended. Am I being too thin-skinned? Am I becoming the Christian version of the “cancel-culture” from the world which I passionately hate?

Here’s what I think I will do. I think I will read on, and direct my anger and frustration and prayer for the author and all those who think like him. I think I will try to glean any good information on creativity that I can in hopes that it will help my research and then in the process, I will do what I planned to do all along which is write (as best as I am able) the consummate book on creativity for the Church, one that acknowledges our Lord on every page and encourages believing creatives to use their creativity for the sake of the Gospel and the Kingdom of God.

What would you do?

Would You Rather?

Posted: August 5, 2022 in Uncategorized

I’ve been ministering this week for the Family Art Camp at the Washington, PA Corps of the Salvation Army with my friends Captains Amber and Jason Imhoff, and what a blessed week it has been! I have been responsible for the evening messages and some of the art projects, while Amber has been doing other art projet/crafts and some icebreaker games. Last night’s game really got me thinking. We played “Would You Rather?” based on things that happened in the Bible. Basically the participants had to go to the side of the room that matched their answer. One of the questions really hit me.

“Would you rather have 15 years added to your live (like Hezekiah) or ride to heaven in a flaming chariot (like Elijah)?”

For me this one wasn’t even hard. I made a b-line for the side of the room for having 15 years added to your life. That might sound shallow or even unspiritual for someone who does what I do. Here’s why it’s not. I am a believer in Jesus Christ. He is my Lord and Savior and I believe with all my heart that His sacrifice secures my space in eternity. I’d have to believe there will be a lot of opportunities for flaming chariot rides where I am headed when this life is through. Here’s what I am also sure of. This world is a mess and everywhere I look are people who need to find the hope that I have found. 15 more years of life (tacked on to whatever God is already determined to give me, since He already knows what that is), would equal 15 more years to do good in this world. It would be fifteen more years to share the good news of Jesus Christ with that many more people. There’s nothing that compares to serving the Lord, especially when I know what’s on the other side. Lord, I know what is on the other side of the grave because of the hope I have found in you. Please give me as much time as you desire to share that hope while I am here.

The Power of Prayer

Posted: August 1, 2022 in Uncategorized

I recently came upon a post which spoke to the idea of reframing I’ll pray for you. They included this graphic.

This was my response…

“I’ll pray for you, and…’ any of these would be fine, except for “holding space” because what the heck does that mean? lol Seriously we who are believers have to resist giving into culture’s idea that prayer is the equivalent to doing nothing. I understand that not everyone believes in the power of prayer, but I think we need to at least acknowledge our belief in it. I often go back to the story of the paralyzed man lowered through the roof in front of Jesus. Notice it says when Jesus saw their faith. It wasn’t necessarily the faith of the paralyzed man that borough his healing but rather of the guys willing to go to extraordinary lengths to bring their friend before the Lord. That’s prayer and when God acts on our prayers, people should know what we believe happened… Just my two cents.”

Prayer is taking the situation to the Creator of all things, the most powerful being in the Universe. It is not just something it is THE thing, and to my mind it should be the first thing. What say you?

What do you do when the first pages of a memoir speak of being hit by a truck and living to tell the tale? You read on. This is a thoroughly enjoyable memoir from a phenomenal musician, Mark Lee of Third Day. It’s more than just a behind the music episode. This is the story of one man’s journey to “happily ever after” and coming to the realization that that’s not really the point. This is a wonderful story of life, music, faith and a God who is bigger than all we face. Great stuff and I highly recommend it.

I found this book at Hobby Lobby on clearance. What a shame. This book is extraordinary. It’s all about forming good habits and breaking bad ones. Batterson’s thesis is simple. Do it for a day! It’s the old proverb, “How do you eat an elephant? One bite at a time” fleshed out in wonderful ways. Combining scriptural stories with stories of more modern people with plenty of examples, Batterson writes a useful, instructive and highly relatable book. Following his own format, the book is designed to be read a chapter a day, which is essentially how I read it, and as a result I have already done some work on a few of my habits and learned a lot in the process. This thing is inspiring. Pick up your copy ASAP, as a matter of face, do it today.


Posted: July 22, 2022 in Uncategorized

Tomorrow I set off with my wife and son for a week’s vacation, and for the first time since I have been in “full-time ministry” I really feel like I need it. I’m really tired, practically exhausted and I am really exploring why I feel this way. The thing is, it’s not my church, nor is it my ministry to the wider Church. I find both of those ministries immensely fulfilling and meaningful. I love what I do. So what is the problem? As near as I can see it, it’s the world. I am burned out on the world. I am sick of being part of a generation that calls evil good. I am weary of the attack on so much of what is right and good and true. I am tired of the only thing that is still allowed to be called wrong is saying something is wrong. I lament the values being passed on to the next generation. I am undone by the apostasy I see rising up as so much of the “church” seems to have traded the truth of God’s Word for the whims of the culture. I need a few days away from the tumult of “social” media, the “news,” etc. I need a few days of rest and some good moments of quiet contemplation and one more thing. I need to lose myself in worship. Right now I’m pretty much in fight or flight mode. I want to fight and sometimes, if I’m honest, I want to fight ugly, but then I remember, the battle is the Lord’s, so I will flee to Him for a while. Catch you on the other side.

Think about it. All sin is idolatry. What do I mean by that? Well think back to the original sin. No, not the doctrine of original sin which very basically stated is the idea that we are all infected by Adam’s sin. I’m not speaking to that today. I am speaking to the very first sin—the one that started humanity’s downhill slide. What was it? It was when Adam and Eve ate from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. What was the sin? They did what God told them not to do. On the surface that is exactly correct, but I think it goes just a little bit deeper. They were in the Garden with God. God loved them and they loved God, but I believe love requires a choice. We need to choose to love and so God gave them a choice. He took them on a tour of the garden He had created specifically for them. He said basically, “You can eat from any tree in the garden except for that one in the middle. If you eat from that one, you’ll die.” Now we know that Satan tempted them and they ate from the tree and that was that, or was it? You see, I think the tree was the choice. God was saying choose me over your desire to eat from that tree. Essentially they looked at the fruit, they looked at God then back at the tree and essentially said, “We want the fruit more than we want you.” They chose the fruit over God. Anything we choose over God is an idol and every time we sin that is what we are doing, even if only temporarily, we are choosing sin over God. Because of this, all sin is idolatry.

Conversely all idolatry is sin. Anything we choose over God—anything we place before God in our lives becomes an idol—good bad or indifferent. It’s not just bowing down to a statue, it’s any time we pick anything and put it in front of God in our lives—money, people, sins, even self. Any time we choose to do something God in His Word tells us not to do, it is choosing that sin over God—idolatry. Any time we choose not to do what God tells us to do, It’s choosing ourselves, out time, our schedule, our will over God’s will and once again, that’s idolatry and all idolatry is sin.

Why am I sharing this on my arts ministry blog? First of all I woke up this morning with this constantly running through my brain, until I wrote it down, but more than that, there are a whole lot of people out there trying to redefine sin. Only God can do that and He hasn’t. What He has said in His Word is unchanging. Secondly, there are times where in our artistic pursuits we are accused to creating idols. This is almost never the case in the sense that people think we are creating something for the purpose of bowing down to it. No the idolatry we face is much more sneaky and insidious. We need to guard out hearts and be more discerning as to when we are putting our creativity and art making in front of our God and His will for our lives. Even well-intended idolatry is still idolatry and all idolatry is sin.

Guard your heart and submit your work and your life to God. He won’t steer you wrong.

What If It’s Worship?

Posted: July 15, 2022 in Uncategorized

I spent the late morning and early afternoon yesterday at Sight and Sound Theater here in Lancaster, PA, watching their amazing production “David.” What an fantastic show! I love how they dramatize the lives of the amazing people God has used in His Word. I don’t like to say they make the Bible come alive because the Bible already is alive by the power of the Spirit, but they definitely allow you to see the people of the Bible as real people. People who are living on page 50 not knowing what will happen on page 51, if that makes sense. They lived the stories we read in real time. This kind of brings me. to my own story.

As I watched a really gifted young actor portray the great man whose name I share, I started to think about my own story, and how this David is doing. I think I’m a little tired—burned out being too strong a word for what I am experiencing, but I am tired. All around me I see giants—things coming out of our broken world that are terrible and huge—things that threaten our lives and mock my God. Like that giant long ago, they seem to cry out, “Who will fight?” I want to stand like my namesake so long ago, but I confess I feel so small and ill equipped. You see it’s not just that I want to “slay the giants.” I also (really) want to see the people in their grasp being set free. I just really feel like I don’t have what it takes. Then I remember, David didn’t either. The battle was the Lord’s and it still is.

In the show there is a scene (not the Goliath scene) where Samuel tells David there are some battles that are not won with swords. Rather the people begin to worship and the Lord shows up and wins the fight. Could it be that simple? What if it’s worship? What if instead of feeling overwhelmed by the scope of the battle and the size of the giants, what if we approached the throne and called upon the name of the Lord? What if we lifted our praise in the face of the giants and let the Lord take them down? I and starting to think that is precisely what is needed.

There is one truly terrifying scene in the show. After fighting and fighting and fighting, and coming home to face the demands of leadership, a burned out David, can’t fight anymore. He’s been so consumed with the battles for so long and guess what got pushed out of his life by the demands. It was his connection with the Father. The man after God’s own heart became so busy slaying giants that he lost connection with the source of His power. In the process, he lost the ultimate fight and ended up falling and falling hard. What if it’s worship? What if we need to take our focus off the giants and off of the battle and put it firmly onto the One to whom the battle belongs. Fatigue, burnout and failure come when we forget who the battle belongs to, and begin to fight in our own power. There has to be a better way.

What if it’s worship?