Friday, August 9, 2013

'religious' art

Context: my brother is in a rap group and they made it to nationals for a fine arts competition. This week has been spent in Orlando, seeing the sights, getting sunburnt, enjoying the ocean, and experiencing a multitude of fine art. I was sitting with my mom, watching a group do a worship dance to a contemporary christian song. She looks over at me and goes "you should make all your dances religious next year". More context. I am a dance teacher. Next year (this up-coming dance season) I will have 15 classes in 5 genres. Exciting! Usually I use some 'Christian' music, because I like it, and some secular music, because I like that as well. Mom was making the point that she would like to see me use all 'Christian' music - or do all my dances with a religious theme of some kind.

I told her all my dances were religious whether or not the artist was someone like TobyMac. See, I dance to glorify God and I create art to glorify God. I'm pretty sure I can dance to a Coldplay song that talks about color and still glorify God just as much as dancing to a song by Matt Maher that talks about Jesus being risen from the dead. Art is art, and I think it can still be 'Christian' without using a 'Christian' song.

I once read an article by a man who was talking about how ridiculous it was to put the label "Christian" on music. His point was, if you are going to make a beautiful song, it will already convey God and His love because God and His love are the epitome of beauty. So there can be 'good' music, as in well written and having a good melody and beat and all; just as there can be 'bad' music, with lyrics that don't rhyme or notes that don't match. But you can't have 'Christian' music or 'non-Christian' music just because a beautiful song points to a beautiful God who created beautiful things. It was a good article.

Art is the same way, in my mind. If you have a sculpture of a person, you are elevating that person by sculpting them in a sense... but you are also elevating God who made that person. By thinking 'wow, that sculpture is amazing', so you would think 'wow, God is amazing who made that person'. See what I'm getting at?

Dance is the same. To me. I can praise God no matter what song I dance to or what genre I dance to because He made my body, He made me dance, and it's a talent I can use to glorify His name. Even if I dance to music other than songs they play on K-Love. Because I'm creating something beautiful by dancing and creating dances. 

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