Worshiping through Talent

Continuing with this week’s theme of worship, here are two stories from MK girls of how they have used their talents to bring glory to God and worship him:

I’m a photography lover.  It’s hard to believe that just a few short years ago I hadn’t taken more than a handful of photos, and the only camera I had back then was a cheap toy that took blurry pictures no matter how hard I tried to compose my shots correctly. I first started getting into photography when I was in eighth or ninth grade, and slowly developed a passion for it. The first half of my eleventh grade year, I would beg my dad to use his camera which was much better than mine. Finally, for Christmas that year my parents bought me a Canon Powershot. My photography continued to improve as I snapped away and became one of the main photographers for my high school yearbook staff. I eagerly offered to attend as many events as I could, and although I didn’t know how to change setting on the Nikon D90 I was using, I kept shooting. Although I knew the basics of photography at that point, I still had much to learn. Last semester I bought my first DSLR, a Canon EOS Rebel T1i. I took a college digital photography class and read several books on photography, so that I now have a much better understanding of the art. I am a blogger, and just recently I have started following many professional photographers’ blogs in order to learn from them. I also started a 365-photo-a-day challenge at the beginning of this year. As a Christian, I seek to excel in my photography so that Christ may be glorified through it. He gave me this talent, and I have the choice to either develop it or not. Recently I have been pairing Scripture with photos as an expression of worship so that I might bless and encourage others. As I reflect on my week and choose which verses to use, God teaches me more about Him and His word. My talent isn’t from me, but from God, who I worship through photography as I continue to improve and seek his will for my life. -Jessica

Hi, my name is Emily, and I’m a recovering dance-a-holic. I know that sounds a bit insane, but seriously, I am. At age 3 I started taking dance classes. Movement was the first way I learned to express myself. Before going to school and learning how to write essays and formulate speeches, I was learning to pirouette and shuffle-step. By the time I was 8, I started practicing nearly everyday of the week, and competing on weekends. In middle school, my life was dance. I ate, slept, went to school, danced, and then did it all over again. I even got dismissed from certain classes in school because of my rigorous dance schedule. I was a fairly shy person, but when I got on that stage to perform, my body took over, and I was a new person: fearless and enjoying every moment of it. I auditioned for a special high school for crazy artists like me who want to pursue their passion further and was accepted! But, the summer between 8th and 9th grade, my world was changed. I had a new passion: Jesus Christ. I slowly realized myself wanting to do everything in my power to exalt Him, not myself. My head now knew that He was all that mattered, not dance, and my actions started to follow. In a place where I was graded on my abilities, and competing for the highest level or a placement in the front of the group, I had a hard time focusing on God instead of myself. I struggled for two years at the art school to balance out my love of God and dance, and He, in all of His grace, helped me let go of dance. I still love to dance and always will, but it won’t ever be before my Savior. Now, I occasionally take classes, and am constantly choreographing dances to my favorite songs. Because dance is one of the most natural ways of expression for me, I love to go in my room, blast worship music, and dance for the only One’s opinion I truly care about. Recently, I have been exploring ministry through dance and asking God if that’s where He wants me. I don’t know yet what He has for my future, but I know He has instilled a love of dance within me for a reason. -Emily

How do you use your talents to worship God?

Stories taken from the April 2011 issue of Not of this World. Sign up for Christmas Devotionals here

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