Art, the Gospel and Another One of Our Own Serving Globally

Taylor is a young artist and a LifePointer (when she’s home from school). She’s about to do some amazing work by allowing God to use her to reach out to the Arab world. Please pray for her. Even consider supporting her.

“What enriches your life?”

This question was bounced around in my 8am Art Theory class, along with – “What is art?” and “Why does art matter?” While my classmates and I were still groggy and trying to yawn away the sleepiness that was encouraging us to put our heads down and close our eyes, these deep questions struck a chord in us ringing – “Does the art I do matter?” Through this class on theory and philosophy and through bringing our art in our respective mediums to the class for critique, I started to see a longing in my fellow art students hearts. A longing for beauty. A longing for truth. For understanding. Value. Importance.

Over my last year at Bridgewater College in Virginia, I have seen God work in and through my art.  He showed me an intimacy and authenticity that was possible with Him through self-portraiture.  He revealed Himself to me through photo shoots.  I discovered how I could worship and glorify God through my art – both the process and the product. I saw hearts, originally hard to the Gospel, softened through the critiques of my art.  Fellow students began to understand what Jesus meant to me, in a personal, relational way – rather than through my, I must admit, prideful and arrogant answers to our ponderings in our 8am theory and philosophy class.  My fellow art students and professors were able to, alongside me, explore the individuality of each Christian’s walk and relationship to Christ, but also the underlying and connecting foundation of the absolute Truth of who God is.

This entire experience over the past year has brought me to see how God wants to redeem the art world and how He desires to reach people through the arts that are, in other ways, closed off and hardened to the Gospel. He, as the Creator, has inspired creativity in us, His creation. Art helps to reveal the universal longing in humans for beauty and truth, to be able to develop a relationship to the transcendent and majestic. From that, deep, probing questions naturally arise in the heart of the viewer, as well as, in the artist.

After much prayer, God has opened doors for me to go to the Arab World for a one-year internship with Cru (formerly Campus Crusade for Christ) to reach college students using my artistic gifts.

Why Cru?

While I was earning my degree at Bridgewater College in Virginia, I was invited to James Madison University’s Cru (formerly Campus Crusade for Christ) by a dear friend. Through being involved with Campus Crusade, I came to experience authentic faith in my own heart as well as in the hearts of those in my community. As I grew in my relationship with the Lord, I came to understand the necessity of sharing my faith with others and in helping to walk beside others as they grow in their own personal walks with God. Knowing Christ personally has been the best thing that has ever happened to me. Now, I want people all over the world to hear about Christ’s love for them, and have the opportunity to come to know Him, too.

Why the Arab World?

It is a chance to serve the Lord in a place desperate for His truth. It’s an opportunity to go and befriend women who are living in a world driven by fear and isolation. It’s a wonderful opportunity to go and trust in the Lord’s creativity and purpose, and watch Him open the doors for Christ to be known and loved in a closed country. It’s a chance to build up ambassadors for Christ in one of the darkest areas of the world.

Also, since I am a woman, my main focus in the Arab world will be women.  The women in the Arab culture are told through their culture who they are, what they believe, how to behave, and what value they have as human beings.

Just as I am a better American student, daughter, friend, and artist because I am a Christian; the women I will be ministering to will be better Arab women, daughters, mothers, sisters, and friends because they are followers of Christ.  The redeeming – not the replacing of – the Arab culture is the goal .  I’m also saying they do not need to be Western, North American Christians, in fact they should not.  Christ is not for one group of people, He is for all.  And our God is a God of diversity, stemming from His creativity.  I’m so excited to see how this appendage of the Bride of Christ is adorned and shines His glory!

As excited as I am about this opportunity, I cannot do it alone. I need your help. My goal is to leave for Africa on August 1st. But before I go, I face the challenge trusting God to call others to partner with me in this mission. Like many other mission organizations, Campus Crusade for Christ missionary staff must raise all of their financial support. So, I am looking for people who will partner with me by investing prayers and finances in this mission. As I take this large step of faith to serve the Lord in ministry, would you prayerfully consider joining me as a partner in this mission by investing in my ministry.

I am mainly looking for partners to join my team at $100 per month ($1200 total for the year).  Since I would love to have everyone at LifePoint involved in my ministry, and this amount is not possible for everyone – I would love to have you on my team with another amount monthly, or even through a one-time gift.

If you feel led to join my team financially, you can go to give.cru.org and type in my account number (#0656200).  Also, if you have any questions or would like to be put on my prayer and update letter, please feel free to shoot me an email (taylor.dukehart@cru.org)

Thank you. To God be the glory.

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