A volcanic eruption in 1994 destroyed the Seventh-day Adventist Church's mission compound in Rabaul (PNG). Standing in the midst of the devastation and his own disappointment, Dr Brad Watson soon realised an important truth: God is in the business of giving "beauty for ashes" (Isaiah 61:3).
If God cared enough to dedicate entire books in the canon of Scripture to poetry and song; if Jesus cared enough to spend a significant portion of His time on earth to being a storyteller; and if He cared enough to fill His house with colours, music, texture and beauty, then He is a God who values and invests in the arts as a way of telling us and the world who He is. And maybe we should do the same.
When it comes to beauty, the world and the Word of God have very different views.
An afternoon with the van Gogh exhibition in Melbourne reminded me of a quote I came across a while back about galleries and art lovers—and how they seem a lot like churches and believers.