CONFESSION #29: I often believe the lie that if my creative work isn't overtly Christian in its themes, then it's not for the glory of God.
Do Christians have to make their creative work overtly Christian? That's a question I get all of the time. It's a question that I tend to ask myself all of the time. And the answer is no. A Christian is called to do everything for the glory of God, but they are not called to make their work overtly Christian in themes. In fact, I think that works that are overtly Christian in themes struggle at being effective or even truthful about the realities of life under the sun, but that's a subject for another day.
Essentially, as a Christian your focus when it comes to what you're creating content wise should be ultimately to the glory of God.
"And whatever you do, in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the father through him."
"So whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God."
1 Corinthians 10:31
That's the heart, but what does this look like practically? Well, if you're making a work of art that brings glory to God, you're not going to glorify illegal drug usage, drunkenness, pre-marital sex, or other sins. You might potentially use one of these things as a way of showing a person's sin or character, but glorifying God means that these things can't be glorified because God finds them unrighteous. However, if you use any of these things to convey a greater theme of redemption or even to show that they shouldn't be glorified, that's a different story.
"Is my work for the glory of God, or is my work for the glory of fleeting earthly pleasures?" This is the essential question that you should ask when it comes to creative content.
In my opinion, sex is the main thing that Christians should exert extreme wisdom, discretion, and modesty when using in creative content. Why do I think so? Sexual immorality usually leads to the greatest temptation and destruction. Our culture's view of sex is counter to God's view of sex, and sexual immorality is rampant and explicit in the content of our culture's creative works. Therefore, as believers we should use extreme caution, wisdom, and discernment when it comes to sex in creative works or even the works that we consume.
Some believers might be reading this wondering, "But how does someone do that practically, because I know believers that desire to write novels or make movies that show how sexual immorality leads to destruction or even how God used a young girl getting pregnant to lead her to following Christ. How does one touch about the topic of sex but in a way that brings glory to God?"
I think that there is a way to do so that shows discretion and modesty when it comes to the subject. Obviously, this means that a sexually explicit scene isn't modest or discreet, but as creative people, there are ways to convey something without being explicit.
These are just some thoughts about bringing glory to God in the content we create. These thoughts are by no means exhaustive. Bringing glory to God in content is a tricky line. As artists, we desire for our work to be genuine, honest, and to strike a chord with our audiences. We should also want our work to depict life under the sun in a fallen and broken world, but we can still bring glory to God in our content even if it doesn't convey overtly Christian themes.
What are your thoughts? What helps you bring glory to God in the content that you create? Or even how do you view content in your creative work or the creative work of others?
This post is part of a 31 day series called Confessions of a Creative Christian.
Shalom! I'm Madi, a laughter-loving, movie-going, spontaneous-dancing, follower of Christ. Join me as I seek glimpses of God's grace in the ordinary and everyday.
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