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January 7, 2019
March 21, 2024

The Church is Not Your Art Gallery

What does the church have to do with creativity? And what does creativity have to do with the church?

In this video, Cole Brown reminds creatives that the Church does not exist to display their creativity, but God’s creativity.


The Church, Creatives, is not your art gallery. I have run into so many creatives who expect the Church to provide a platform for their creativity. But remember, your creativity is not the most important thing you have to offer the church. It’s not what they most need from you. That’s probably frustrating. But it should only be a big deal if you’ve already fallen into the trap of identifying yourself principally as a creative, instead of principally identifying as an image bearer. The truth is, most people don’t get to bring their job to church, most people don’t get to promote their work at the church. All people, including you, get to serve the Church.

A second way that creative people could possibly treat the church as an art gallery, and it does happen is this – creative people look at the world through their perspective, which is to look at the world with artistic lenses. When you look at the Church in the same way, you can come up disappointed. Maybe you’ve felt that in your own heart, you’ve found yourself criticizing the songs that you sing because the melodies or the music are just too simple, or the lyrics are too straightforward, or you despise the facilities that your church gathers in because of their aesthetics or the lack thereof, or you want to vomit when you see the church bulletin.

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Maybe you can’t stand the preacher, because for your taste, it’s too analytic, you’re looking for something else. I’m not saying I wouldn’t agree with your assessment of artistic merits, I probably would, I’m saying – the fact that we’re even measuring these things by artistic merit might itself be the problem. Because it might be revealing that we have a wrong idea what the Church is and what the Church is for. The Church is not an art gallery and it does not exist to put on display human creativity. The Church is God’s family and it exists to put on display God’s creativity as He shapes His people more and more into His image. In other words, God is the creative force in the Church, not you. You are His workmanship, His artistry, His poetry.

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Cole Brown
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