The Power of Art

Art is a powerful thing. Sometimes it doesn’t feel like it. Sometimes it feels like it’s simply words on a page or paint on a canvas or notes on the air. Other times, it’s impossible to miss how powerful it is. Other times it hits you like a train, bringing you to tears or making you grin uncontrollably. Art is much more than the sum of its parts. Art has the power to spawn emotion in a reader, viewer, listener. I know this first-hand, both from being so affected by art, and by seeing the reactions that my friends have when they read my writing.

“With great power comes great responsibility.” As artists, we have great power, but we have to be careful that we use that power wisely and that we do all we can to make sure it has the intended affect. As Christians, that means that we should reflect God in our writing, and not encourage things that are contrary to that. I don’t mean to say that we can’t portray those things in our writing, but we shouldn’t glorify them. It should be clear that they’re wrong. We should make art for the glory of God. “Therefore, whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do it all to the glory of God.” (1 Corinthians 10:31) It tells us to do even the little things like eating and drinking to the glory of God, so how much more so should we glorify God in something so powerful as art? This is why one of my unwritten new year’s goals is to pray before everything I do. Which maybe seems a bit drastic, but I think it will help me to grow closer to God, glorify Him better through my writing (and in general), and relinquish control of things (something that I have trouble with).

I’ve personally found music and stories to be the most powerful art mediums. Music has brought me close to tears, reminded me of things I’d forgotten, and brought my mood back up when I’m disappointed or frustrated. My youth pastor said one week something along the lines of, “Art brings what we know about God from our minds to our hearts.” Music has certainly done that for me more than once, particularly this year.

Books have also brought me close to tears, made me care about people who don’t exist, sparked my imagination, taught me things (like the fact that Muhammed Ali beat George Foreman in “Rumble in the Jungle” by wearing him out with his own attacks. Thank you, Dreamtreaders), and inspired me to write my own books. I’ve always considered it to be the most powerful medium (though obviously I’m biased), because you can create and destroy so much “at the swipe of a pen,” as a friend of mine said.

Another section of her post said: “All that power, creativity, strength, is a gift. It’s inside every one of us, and nothing, absolutely nothing, is stopping us from using it. But it’s insane how much we take it for granted, look over it, or misuse it.” Let’s not take for granted how powerful art is, let’s not look over it, and let’s use it correctly so that its potential is not wasted or misused.

The closing paragraph of her post said: “WE ARE POWERFUL. NEVER FORGET THAT.”

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