Thursday, June 03, 2010

Call of the Artist

So you wanna go into the arts?

I mean as a way of life – not just a dabbling.

I think we’re all meant to dabble – in fact, built to dabble.

To sing in the shower. To paint pictures for funsies. To make up stories for our kids at night.

But some feel a need to make more of it – to make art their profession, their vocation.

In other words, some not only feel the need to create, but feel led to the combination of devoting themselves to creating AND seeking to find an audience for that creation.

At times, a paying audience even.

So how does one know that they should make the jump from the shower to the stage? (Please, dry off and get dressed first.)

Over at Resurgence, they did a little article on how to tell if you are called into the ministry, and there were a few points that seemed to fit the bill of “artist” as much as “pastor.”

Mostly from John Newton. He has three indicators that one is meant to be in ministry. I’ll think of these as three indicators that one is meant to devote their life energy to writing things like “Amazing Grace.”

One: “a warm and earnest desire to be employed in this service.”

‘Cuz it is a service folks. Those cats at the American Idol audition who want to be famous – yeah, they aren’t called to be artists.

Two: “some competent sufficiency as to gifts, knowledge, and utterance.”

If you weren’t given the gift, you weren’t given the call.

Okay, that’s only sort of true. Let me modify: if you weren’t given the gift, then you are likely misinterpreting the call.

Can’t tell you how many people meant to be working behind the scenes thought they were meant to be on the stage. Most happily get it eventually, and find the place where their gifts meet their passion.

Others still struggle to be in the costume, when they were gifted to make the costume.

Third: an “opening in Providence, by a gradual train of circumstances pointing out the means, the time, the place, of actually entering upon the work.”

Are the doors opening?

Or the windows?

Or the transom?

If not, again, maybe the interpretation of the calling needs another look see.

You feel like you passed the test? Well, not done yet.

Martin Luther also had a few criteria for the calling to ministry; and two seem oh-so designed for the fool wanting to go into the arts:

“Willing to venture body and blood, wealth and honor in the work”


“Suffers himself to be mocked and jeered by everyone.”

For anyone delusional enough to think their work will be above derision, just remember that Sandra Bullock won the Best Actress Oscar and the Razzie in the same year.

Just my thoughts,


1 comment:

Linds said...

Awesome! Thanks for posting this. :)