gath·er·ing n. [ gáəring ]
- assembly: a meeting or crowd of people
- cluster of things: a collection of objects
- collecting of something: the collecting of people or objects into a group
Saturday, I attended The Gathering of Worship Artists hosted by All Things Artistic Ministries, Inc. in Ypsilanti, Michigan. This organization was founded to glorify God through the arts. Its founder, Rev. Dr. Debby Mitchell shared the underlying theme of nourishing God’s people, and encouraging others to move beyond the fear of rejection to give their creative souls back to God. He called us to worship Him in the beauty of His Holiness. 1 Thessalonians 2:4, “We are not trying to please men but God, who test our hearts.” [The Message] We are to love God with everything – our bodies, mind and souls. Worship is a full-bodied activity. Since we were made to worship God, so why not use those creative abilities, which He gave us, to do just that. He gave us creative abilities, made us in His image, and yet our hearts shudder, and tremble at the very thought of using our creative abilities. Why? For some it is fear that stops them, or lack of knowledge, encouragement or support, as well as lack of trust in the one who created us. For others, the need to be seen and to please the call of man is the overriding factor. These mere smoke screens diminish those extraordinary opportunities, and moments which belong to Him. We serve God, not a piece of flesh or metal. When we fail to creatively express ourselves, we throw dirt in the face of God.
Deep within us is the need to create and show the beauty of life, and of our God. We want to capture it, tell our story, and show how God touched us through our families, through nature, or through a life experience. Worship through the creative arts, in all its various forms is to an audience of One.
At this event participants shared, and expressed their love for and to God through song, dance, artistic expression and in personal testimony. It became a powerful re-affirmation to support and encourage each one another.
You may not be able to sing or dance, but there is something inside that is seeking a way to express love and appreciation to God for what He has done, and is doing in and through your life. I encourage to find the artistic way to thank God, and tell your story.