Is art simply supposed to be in the background of our lives? Or did God mean for it to be more? In Discovering God through the Arts, Terry Glaspey teaches how we can grow closer to God by appreciating beauty and creativity.
Spiritual Discipline and Formation
At just about 250 pages, this book is a tour of God’s glory as revealed in the arts. It’s an excellent book on spiritual discipline, and an engaging read to help with spiritual formation.
By slowing down to study art, Glaspey helps us realize how we need to slow down to spend time with God – whether in prayer or Bible reading or simply sitting to experience His presence. Poetry serves the purpose of bringing us into a deeper reality and understanding the mystery of God’s grace to us. And art based on Scripture helps awaken our imagination, seeing things that we might have missed or overlooked.
Emotions and Moments
I was most impacted by how Glaspey explained that art helps us deal with our emotions. First, the arts provide an opportunity for us to exercise our positive emotions. Next, the arts can also give us a cathartic outlet for our negative emotions. Finally, the arts can help us learn to differentiate between false or stock responses to life, and those that are rich and true.
Comfort, courage, and hope are found in the arts. It expands our world to make us more empathetic. Art helps us process and partake in the loud and quiet moments of life.
Good, Beautiful, and True
Glaspey doesn’t just tell us why the arts are important. He actually has us encounter and interact with art in the book. Full-color paintings are sprinkled throughout, and Glaspey gives his insight while helping us discover more. Each chapter ends with questions for reflection and spiritual exercises related to the arts. An extensive list of recommended literature, films, and music is included at the back of the book.
As the world begins to reopen and attempts to go back to “normal,” I find myself wanting to see more beauty in our lives. Good, beautiful, true art is all around us – and it is a reflection of our good, beautiful, and true Creator. This book will help you have ears to hear and eyes to see.
I received a media copy of Discovering God through the Arts and this is my honest review.