ART & OCCUPATION
We have such a creative God! Art is so much more than a hobby, yet we've been led to believe that those things we love to do are our hobbies--the fun things we do when we're not working. We consider those people who are working at what they love to do as being unusual and so fortunate. This does not have to be! The truth is we all have gifts within us. Some are seasonal, some are lifetime. Some complement each other or go well with others around us.
The seven worship art categories are not meant to have strictly defined boundaries. Each person has a unique combination of gifts which gives each person their own worship art fingerprint. As I've said before, your work is your art. Your work is meant to be where you cultivate the seed-gifting God has placed within you. Psalm 128:1-2 tells us that those who fear the Lord shall be happy when eating of the fruit of their hands.
Look at the many different occupations in the world today. They are as vast and varied as individuals are. God has equipped each person with a variety of gifts which make up each one’s artistic fingerprint. This fingerprint is imprinted on the work of your hands as you live life. Whatever your gifts, they are meant to be your occupation, your job, your lot in life, in honor of the Lord and for the blessing of others.
The combination of gifts are literally endless. This is what makes the whole process of discovering the gifts God has placed within you not only exciting, but something that changes throughout your life so your work never becomes dull or stagnant. You may find an ebb and flow cycle of a variety of gifts during different seasons in your life. Discovering these gifts and cultivating them, watching them grow and produce fruit is a joyful and satisfying process. Imagine kids finding joy and passion in an area of interest at a young age, and training in that area for an occupation.
Consider some of the following art combinations as they relate to occupations:
A performing/literary artist might find employment as a dance instructor. Dance is a performing arts category and the teaching aspect of it is literary art. Yet a choreographer might be performing/architectural, due to dealing with the structure or design of a dance.
A pastor is there walking right through the mud with his people, helping them rebuild their lives when necessary. This might show a mercy motivation--a “hands on-get messy” sculpture arts characteristic. However the leadership gift within him also gives him the wisdom in helping others rebuild their lives. I wouldn't be surprised to see a pastor who likes to cook or garden since the culinary artist is one who cares for the body.
A culinary artist may not only be a nutritionist or gardener, but less obviously a physician might have a culinary gift. Chiropractors might have some level of culinary gifting. Those who co-ordinate soup kitchens, church picnics or dinners for those in need might be a culinary artist with an architectural, (leadership), flair. A culinary artist might be a massage therapist who ministers to the physical body, creates an atmosphere, and uses a fragrance allowing a person to be ministered to spiritually at the same time by being able to connect with the Lord.
A children's minister might very well have a varied combination of gifts. He or she might be a performing artist with a visual or sculptural gift. Puppets, skits, object lessons, stories and crafts would all make for a variety of gifts. Depending on the minister, each one will have a different atmosphere in their class.
A musician is an audio artist, and if he or she has a leadership gift he might be employed as a conductor or music director/leader of some type. A prophetic musician may also be a visual artist. Of course a songwriter would be a combination audio and literary artist. In this practice an audio artist might also be one who works with lights. You might find this type of artist working in theatre or film which would be a performing art.
It may be obvious to see that painters, sketch artists and photographers are visual artists, but the visual artist who is also prophetic may bring a message from the Lord. The prophetic gifting in the visual artist may not only lead him/her to look to the present or the future, but to the past. This person might be a historian. A visual/literary artist may be a historian who is committed to accurately preserving historical documents or concepts. A visual artist may also be employed in computer graphics or design.
A literary artist may, of course, be an author of books, blogs etc. As an occupation he/she may combine with a performing arts gift to write screenplays or commercials. A sculpture/literary artist may become an art teacher in his/her preferred area of art. A literary/audio gift might do well as a music teacher. A literary artist might work in a courthouse to preserve the records. This is a scribe who is committed to protecting the truth.
The occupations of a sculpture artist may be quite varied. In this worship art practice there are many variations of sculpture arts--jewelry, metals, pottery, fabric etc. A sculpture/architectural artist might design a line of clothing. A sculpture/audio artist might make musical instruments.
The architectural artist is a leadership, foundational type of gift. Most likely this person has other gifts that will give direction to his/her area of leadership. As we've mentioned already--ministers or church leaders, conductors and choreographers might be architectural. In addition, entrepreneurs, or anyone in a leadership role in relation to their gift.
As you can see, the combinations of gifts as they relate to occupation are endless, which is what makes each person unique. This is why it’s so much better for kids to learn how to discover their gifts and call while young. This way they can begin to train and prepare, learning the basics of their calling, (and how to find their calling), so they don't have to unlearn what the obstacles and distractions have taught them along the way. They can start out learning what they need to learn while young which enables them to develop in the anointing the Lord has for them. They will also know how to hear from the Lord so they will know how to tune in when there are seasons of change.
We are children of the most High God. We are His family. We are sons and daughters whom He loves to the point of shedding His own blood for us. As we work with Him to build His kingdom, we are building something that we are an intricate part of. As we discover our place in His family and contribute our creative gifting to it, our place in His family becomes much more clear and real to us.