The Purpose of Beautiful Art
As is probably the case for some of you, I at least dabbled in art classes throughout my college years. Frustratedly, I worked my way through a photography class (I certainly didn’t know that photography would be so hard), and a drawing class without much success in either. It seemed that, despite my focus and efforts, I could never bring any artistic endeavor to life. After a significant drop in my GPA, thanks to those two classes, I decided that I had dabbled enough, and that I just wasn’t cut out to be an artist.
I think part of my problem was that I didn’t understand the purpose of an artistic piece. In my feeble attempts to create something beautiful, I would focus so much on the fine details, the individual brush strokes if you will, that I lost focus on the big picture, the subject of my art. I think that’s what sets great art apart from amateur or ‘mediocre’ art. Great art captivates, it draws you in. Each brush stroke, color, and element adds to the story, and compliments the focus of the piece. The artist seeks to create something in which the viewer gets lost, transported somewhere else, and they do so by using intentionality, and avoiding anything that might distract from the focus of their piece.
In my mind, great art is defined by being ‘un-distractingly excellent.’ When applied to photography, or illustration, or paintings, it means that the focus is clear, excellently composed, and enhanced by the brush strokes and elements around it. When applied to Christian worship, it means that our focus is loudly and clearly Jesus as the center, supreme over all. Everything else, the musical instrumentation, the vocal singing, the preaching, and even the announcements, are all brush strokes that aim to point excellently toward that focus. Every weekend, that is our goal. Never do we want the individual elements of our service to overshadow or outweigh the glory of our God. Instead, our striving is to the end that our services would echo the words of Psalm 86:8-10 “There is none like thee among the gods, O Lord, nor are there any works like thine. All the nations thou hast made shall come and bow down before thee, O Lord, and shall glorify thy name. For thou art great and doest wondrous things, thou alone art God.”
I point this out because we as a church want to continue pursuing un-distracting excellence in our worship services, and in our lives. One of the ways we are striving to attain this goal is by making some big changes to our current sanctuary sound system. Based on some feedback EBC’s leadership has received, and things that the Leadership Team have noticed themselves, there is room for improvement, that we believe, will help us as we strive to limit distractions in our worship services. Like a brush stroke on canvas, the sound system is an element that can be used to keep our focus on the main thing: Boldly proclaiming God as the ruler over all things, Jesus as the Savior from all sin, and the Spirit as the essential helper in the sanctification of all believers.
The Leadership Team would love for you to join us on Sunday, August 26 at 6:00 pm for a special members’ meeting in which we’ll discuss the sound system redesign proposal, the project budget, address any questions you may have, and take a congregational vote on the proposal. We look forward to sharing the evening with you.
Read the sound redesign proposal that will be passed out at the worship services this weekend.
In His Mercy,