“It was the first time I realized that painting could capture the Word of God, speak into people’s lives and give me the opportunity to share my faith.”

Janice T. (Alliance & Short-term team member)

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Every day all around the globe, artists on mission are creating, cultivating, and contributing in their communities. As they seek to see their art used in the work the Lord is doing, we want to share their stories to encourage and inspire.
This blog is a place to read those stories, giving you a glimpse into how the Lord is using the arts around the world.

Within Inspiro, we talk a lot about artists. On the ‘Who We Are’ page of our website, we state, ‘We cultivate and empower artists globally to spark beautiful worship and witness among the least reached.’ We are a ministry comprised of artists that ministers to and through artists who seek to fulfill the Great Commission as artists. However, we realize that the term ‘artist’ can mean different things depending on your cultural context. We never want anyone interested in serving with us to be hindered by a misunderstanding of this term. In an effort to all be on the same page, here are some reflections on what it means to be an artist.

 ‘Maybe 2022 will be better.’ It seems like just yesterday (12 days ago, to be exact) people were saying the same thing, except about the year 2021. Already, this New Year has been fraught with continued political unrest, a stubborn pandemic, anxiety, depression, and an overall feeling of dismay. In response, it has been remarkably easy to automatically assume the entire year will be terrible while hoping next year will be better. The general attitude of many I have observed is one of unenthusiastic acceptance of the way things are while seeking to find happiness and relief wherever it might be lurking.

It seemed I found a million and one reasons to be frustrated today. The nurse at the doctor’s office spoke with contempt on the phone, I almost got backed into in the parking lot, there were too many people at the store, that lady didn’t return my smile. . . the list goes on and on and on. As I milled around the grocery store with the hundreds of other men and women (all in masks) who were doing their last-minute Christmas shopping, I was full of an attitude of disdain, frustrated over how many of them seemed to be ‘in my way.’ As a sense of the rottenness of my attitude began to wash over me, I considered what might change if I began to view my fellow shoppers as on the same team as I – all of us shopping together rather than me versus them. Then, a quiet, inaudible voice said, ‘They weren’t in My way.’

In our modern culture love is all around – so it seems. Considering songs hitting the charts, soap operas, movies, and pink heart-shaped posts on social media, you cannot help thinking that love is the currency of society. But aren’t we all experiencing something different? The pandemic stifles the hope of men and women, deprives them of their zest for life, increases isolation and loneliness... Aren’t these the opposites of love? Sometimes, people talk a lot about things they wish they had: more money, more days off, more good friends. More love, too?

Christmas Day is just around the corner. With mixed feelings, we’re looking forward to what will no doubt be a strange and awkward celebration. When year after year we anticipate being with family and loved ones, it seems unfair and painful we need to plan to keep our distance.

But maybe some goodness hides in that pain.

Joy, a profound reality bathed in suffering, rooted in touchable hope

“Joy to the world! The Lord is come. Let earth receive her King!” We sing.

“He came to that which was His own, but His own did not receive Him” (John 1:11).

The innocent newborn baby’s cry which gave tremendous joy to His parents mourns for the betrayal, the humiliation, the crucifixion, and Jesus’s own burial merely three decades later.

I wonder, if Mary and Joseph had known this beforehand, would that cry of baby Jesus bring joy?

But the angel said, “[…] I bring you good news that will cause great joy for all the people” (Luke 2:10).