In my first post, I wrote about a powerful experience I had worshipping God while viewing a painting by Monet in London. Today I'm focusing on others who also have been moved to worship God through art.
Freelance designer and former art director for Discipleship Journal Anne Elhajoui says, “Whenever I see great art, great design, great music or dance, I think about God. It makes me worship and praise him.”
For Dena Dyer, who’s a writer, actor and singer, it’s the Les Miserables soundtrack and show that make her worship. “I can’t listen to the soundtrack or see the Broadway show without weeping with gratitude at the grace of God. The story and music are exquisite, and the themes of forgiveness, mercy and loving others as Christ loved us always move me.”
Doug Roeglin, an art director at a private college, says, “The first time I saw a Louis Tiffany window/wall, my knees turned to jelly and the hairs on my neck stood on end. I couldn’t help but worship God for the color and form he made that would inspire such glorious, magnificent beauty.”
An art exhibit at MIT led to a profound worship experience that Laurie Fuller, graphic designer and painter, still remembers clearly 18 years later. “Although the students used the science of math as the source of their artwork, the beauty of the structures reminded me of the balance found in God’s creation. I was overwhelmed with the complexity and beauty of God’s designs in the world around me and by his greatness and began to worship him.”
God can use anything to touch our hearts—regardless of whether the art or the artist is explicitly Christian—so that we respond to him in worship. When we realize this, we will be more open and attentive to the music we hear, the paintings we see, the poetry we read, the performances we watch. We will sense his presence in the notes of a symphony, the pages of a book and, perhaps, the brush strokes of a man named Monet whose gift, great though it was, is only a dim impression of the creative genius and power of the one who gave it to him.
Have you ever had a similar worship experience through the arts? If so, please email me and tell me about it. I may use your story on my blog in the future.
Portions of this post first appeared in an article I wrote for The Lookout magazine, October 2002.