Story Half Told

We’ve all seen them… crosses. Most evangelical churches have them up front or lifted high in the air on their steeples. We wear them around our necks or display them on our rear bumpers. We who are worship arts designers work them into song lyrics or sermon slides.

And why not? We need to be reminded every day about Christ’s sacrifice for us. And, as believers, we “want to know Christ and the power of his resurrection and the fellowship of sharing in his sufferings, becoming like him in his death, and so, somehow, to attain to the resurrection from the dead (Phil 3:10-11).”

Wait… wait!! Catch that?! “… and so, somehow, to attain to the resurrection from the dead.” The story of Jesus Christ does not simply stop at the cross, but continues through to the bright hope of His resurrection. Jesus Christ defeated death when he rose that Sunday morning, and gave us all a future.

So, why as worship arts designers do we include the cross in our images, but fail to include the empty tomb? Why would we want to tell only half the story and leave the best part out?!

I challenge you designers and church architects to include the empty tomb as often as you can. We have a great story to tell visually…. let’s do it!

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To blog or not to blog… that is the question!

Blogging. What a strange thing for me to contemplate doing. I always thought of blogging as a sort of grandiose diary… a digital soapbox. I mean… who would want to read what goes on in my head? Seriously.

I have long yearned to use my creative gifts for Kingdom purposes. I would love to work full time in a church setting, collaborating and teaming together to create stirring and engaging worship services. I have a dream of launching a non-profit organization… a kind of traveling worship experience to our surrounding communities… great vocals, hot band, engaging media… all pointing to a great God.

Okay… so I lead the media team at my church… a volunteer-driven ministry, and I’m very happy to do so. And yet, that’s not the whole picture for me. We’ve gotten to the point where we just use nebulous, ambient backgrounds. Not remotely creative. So what IS that big picture? What does God have for me in this area that He has so fueled with passion in my heart? This is not a mere whim. I simply cannot not do it. I am compelled. I literally think “in video” as I’m singing worship songs… picturing in my mind how I could depict the deeper meaning of the lyrics. How could the selection of songs build up to the teaching, rather than be the “worship segment” of the service? What is that big picture? I simply don’t know yet… and have been waiting for an epiphany… that parting of the clouds and the choir of angels to sing. So far… nada.

Recently, a visiting missionary who spoke at our church talked about how Christ calls us to be “fishers of men.” In other words, God has a call on our lives to fulfill some purpose. So, I’ve heard that before. He shared about things God has placed in his heart, but he was waiting for the opportunity to come knocking. What he was starting to realize that he needed to be working to prepare himself for action. In order to be used of God, he to get his net ready to throw when the time comes. What that meant for him was deepening his understanding of the language and culture in which God had placed him. He could be reading and praying toward that end. God gives us the vision… but we need to work to move toward that vision. It’s in the working that He guides us.

My heart was literally pounding! I’ve been waiting in the sidelines, wishing I could be in the game. But God is calling me to get my net ready.

What is God’s call on my life? For several years, it’s been very clear to me: Worship Arts. I love everything about it… music, technology, planning, helping people encounter Christ in relevant ways. But the specific nature of how this burning passion for worship should be lived out still remains a mystery. Only recently, however, a vision is beginning to bloom in my heart. And I want the world to know. I want to impact worship for every believer or seeker.

So, this is just the beginning. Subscribe to this blog, and let’s enjoy this journey together!

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