Here’s a great example of how spoken word and visual art can be combined to convey a powerful message!
The video below is from Christmas Eve at Discovery Baptist Church. My father, Pastor Mark Suko along with artist Adria Hanson created an amazing chalk art drawing that conveyed the main message of John 1:1-14.
“The Word became flesh”
While they drew on the canvas I read the message while seated on the front row which gave those listening the opportunity to hear the message while watching the live drawing.
There are a few audio glitches in the first 2 minutes, but after that is clears up. (Bold text indicates sections taken directly from John 1:1-14)
In the beginning was the Word
Logos, Absolute truth, perfect goodness, the creative intelligence of the universe Yahweh, Elohim, Adoni, El-Shaddia
And the Word was with God and the Word was God
The all knowing, ever present, completely able, never tiring, perfectly caring, absolutely pure, never faltering or failing or forgetting, always, always, always faithful God!
He was with God in the beginning because he was God with no beginning and no ending
Eternally existing, the Father of time, the Ruler of the ages, author of millennia and milliseconds.
Through him all things were made Without him nothing was made that has been made
When his mouth opened galaxies rushed into place.
Uncounted billions upon trillions of stars exploded into brilliant existence.
He didn’t break a sweat!
When his tongue moved trees burst through the soil
Cedars, redwoods, sequoia entire forests waving their branches together in a symphony orchestrated by the Master composer.
When his vocal chords vibrated the seas rippled with dolphins and orcas, swordfish and sharks
From the grand scale of the Blue Whale to the innate intricacies of the Seahorse
When his lips came together the condor’s magnificent pinions unfolded and swept him away on currents of warm air
And the delicate wings of the hummingbird began to whir.
In him was life and that life was the light of all mankind
When the Word breathed out
Life came in!
Life surged into Adam’s soul and coursed through his veins!
All life physical and spiritual, comes from him, is found in him and is sustained by him.
Over the course of 75 years the human heart will beat 2.5 billion times
And not one beat happens without his power or permission.
The light shines in the darkness and the darkness has not over come it.
The creative life force of the Word emanates with brilliance
No man, no technology, no army, no theology
No legislation, no group of people, no nation
Can snuff it out, trample it down or choke it off.
But they will try!
Not realizing that the light they seek to destroy
Fills their lungs with life and sustains them every day.
And so God’s plan to save and rescue man
Began at the darkest hour before the dawn.
There was a man sent from God whose name was John
Not king John or politician John or movie star John
Not famous John or rich John or powerful John
Ordinary John with an extraordinary task
To prepare hearts to hear the Word, to receive the Word,
To give people back their spiritual sight.
He came as a witness to the light So that through him all might believe
In the light of that Word
The life giving, light shining, heart transforming Word!
He himself was not the light He came only as a witness to the light.
A truth bearer
A light carrier
His message was clear
The King is coming
The Messiah is near
Prepare you heart
Repent and believe.
He pointed the people to him
The cure for their pain and sin.
The true light that gives life to everyone was coming into the world
The unimaginable grandeur of the unlimited, unrestrained, undying, uncreated Word
Stooping, bowing, descending into man’s created world.
He was in the World and though the world was made through him The world did not recognize him
Too many were too busy
Carried away with the concerns of tomorrow
What to eat and what to wear and how to pay the bills.
No, they wouldn’t mind a Savior
One who could feed them and cloth them and pay the bills.
He came to that which was his own But his own did not receive him
Too many too concerned with religious functions
Too many too comfortable with their powerful positions
Too few who could see through the man-made superstitions
Too busy justifying their behavior
They saw no need for a savior!
Yet to all who did receive him To those who believed in his name He gave the right to become children of God!
No hoops to jump through, no red tape to navigate no behavioral code to live up to
No prescribed prayers or perfunctory performances to impress man.
Not belief for belief’s sake but belief in the truth of the Word.
Belief that sin is your greatest problem
Belief that man is hopelessly fallen
Belief in the unique message and person of Jesus
Belief in the life infused power of forgiveness
Found exclusively and extraordinarily in the Word.
True belief in the True Word
Real faith in the real God
Complete trust in the completed work of Jesus
Will always produce
Children born not of natural descent nor of human decision or a husbands will but born of God.
We have all been born into a world of pain
A world of passing pleasures
A world of momentary gain
A world of temporary treasures
A world soiled by sin’s deadly stain
A world that applies band-aids to our cancer
A world that can hardly cope
A world that does not have the answer
A world without hope!
Born of God changes everything!
A new birth
A new life
A new family
A new hope
God was born of man so that we could be born of God
The Word became flesh and made its dwelling among us
How can it be?
The Creator God becoming part of his creation?
Willingly limiting his power through the incarnation?
He even came as a child fully dependent upon his mother
And his life wouldn’t be easy, he was born to suffer!
Our finite minds struggle to span the gap
How could God be born in a stable out back?
We might not comprehend the depths of this plan
We might fail to completely understand
But, believe it we will!
Because there’s truth in this story
And for those who believe
We have seen his glory The glory of the one and only Son Who came from the Father full of grace and truth!
When Jesus came it was in a special way
Not at all like we celebrate Christmas today
There was no “Jingle bells” or ”deck the halls”
No mistletoe or wreaths hanging the walls
No gingerbread houses with candy roofs
No flying sleighs or reindeer hooves
No trees decked out with tinsel and light
No stockings hung over the fire at night
No festive sweaters made by Aunt Pam
No eating of turkey and especially no ham
No fat man with a white beard and black boots
No little people with pointy ears and green suits
No gizmos or gadgets to bring Christmas cheer
No shopping malls filled with new Christmas gear.
You see the first Christmas came without the hype
It was altogether a different type.
It came simply in a quiet way
To a poor couple on winter day.
Surrounded by donkey’s and camels and sheep
Two young parents watched their baby sleep.
They knew he was special but just couldn’t see
How this small child a king could be.
The greatest miracle the world had known
Took place in a stable and not on a throne.
Jesus didn’t need stalking stuffers
Or soft new flannel covers,
He came bearing the greatest gifts there could ever be
He brought the grace to forgive sins and the truth to set us free.
He came to bring real life and light
To give hope to the dying and make broken hearts right.
He came to suffer and die on a tree
The ultimate sacrifice for you and me.
And now one question rings through the night
What will you do with Jesus who is the Word and the Light?
There are ever only two options to weigh
You can ignore him and continue to live for today
And hope that you’ve made it and been good enough
But never knowing for sure if you did the right stuff
Believe the words that Jesus said when he came to earth our sins to forgive.
“I am the resurrection and the life. The person who believes in me, even though he dies, will live.”
Dear friends The Word became flesh when God became a man
It was all a part of his divine plan
God’s gift to us on Christmas
The hope of eternal life and the offer of forgiveness.