“I think that we Christians have made our peace, more or less, with useful culture. Especially when it can be used as a means for our own ends. If the song has Christian lyrics, if the painting has an appropriately pious subject, if the technology used to deliver the gospel - which is often itself conceived as a blueprint, a technical drawing explaining the mechanics of salvation - we are ready and even eager to be culture makers. Contemporary churches are full of less artful delivery mechanisms for (no doubt important) messages.” - Andy Crouch, How Is Art a Gift, a Calling and an Obedience?
In my estimation, much of the Evangelical story has become small. This is especially true of Evangelical, Christian art that acts as a utility to convince people to cross the line of faith rather than telling a good story that evokes the audience’s imagination. Instead of placing emphasis on the role of artists as pastors and prophets, we’ve taught them to act more like producers and programmers.
Additionally, we live in an age where the creative class is at the forefront of the marketplace (see anything by Richard Florida, Dan Pink, or Seth Godin). In many respects we are poised to experience a new renaissance. Some would say we already are. Artists of faith must now see themselves as more than utilitarians, but as high priests and priestesses articulating well and carrying forth the larger story as they lead the way toward a new, imagined future.
Our goal should be to capture the imagination, not the sinner.