Embodying an Incarnational Advent


This excerpt from Advent: Allowing Christ to Rest in Us by the Carmelite Sisters was a part of our morning liturgy today. Consider the embodiment of Christ in Mary and in you as you meditate on this piece:

The one thing that God did ask of Mary was the gift of her humanity. God asked her to give him her body and soul unconditionally and to give him her daily life. Outwardly her life would not differ from the life she would have led if she had not been chosen to be the Bride of the Spirit and the Mother of God.

During Advent Christ rested in Mary – still, silent, helpless, and utterly dependent. In Jesus, the Creator trusted himself to his very own creature. He trusted to her what was most important to him –  the expression of his love for the Father. He was mute: her voice was his voice. He was still: her footsteps were his journeys. He was blind: her eyes were his seeing. His hands were folded: her hands did the work of his hands. His life was her life. His heartbeat was the beating of her heart. 

This is how Christ came in history. It is the same today as he comes to each one of us. For as surely as he rested in Mary, so he rests in you and in me. From the moment when the Christ-life is conceived in us, our life is intended for one thing – the expression of his love – his love for God and for the world. 

Our words are to be the words that he wants to speak. We must go wherever he wants to go. And we must look at whatever he wants to see. Our life must be the living of his life, our love the very loving of his heart.  

And the Word became flesh and blood and made his home with us.

The Virgin Is The Holy House Who Bore The Jesus In Her Womb And Is Forever To Be Honored is a painting by artist Elizabeth Wang. It is available for purchase at https://fineartamerica.com/featured/the-virgin-is-the-holy-house-who-bore-the-jesus-in-her-womb-and-is-forever-to-be-honored-elizabeth-wang.html

How does Christ live, move, see and love through you?

Merry CHRISTmas, Jody

(C) 2022, Jody Thomae


Jody Thomae has been involved in worship arts ministry since 1997 and has authored several Bible studies designed to nurture the creative spirit within. She performs, teaches and leads workshops and retreats connecting creativity, embodiment and spirituality. As an ordained minister, her passion is for the revelation of God to be made more real through the prophetic use of the arts in church and formational ministry. It is her desire to portray the message of Christ’s desperate and unfailing love for His people to help sustain the hearts of the broken and weary. She is particularly interested in the way in which God uses the arts to bring formational development and healing to His people. Her books can be found on Amazon.

Join her at a retreat in 2023!!

Create-A-Day: your daily dose of creativity — Year in Review


In December 2014, God pressed on my heart an idea that would take a year-long commitment and some serious sleuthing. And now, 253 posts and over a year later, the project is done! That project was Create-A-Day: your daily dose of creativity!  A play on One-A-Day® Vitamins, the idea was to refill, replenish and renew your creative soul. My goal was to provide you, the creative Christian, with resources to help develop ARTistry, CREATivity & your capacity for BEaUty.

Over the course of the year, I connected with some amazing folks doing creative ministry in many different ways and places around the world. In connection and conversation, I learned that there is a movement of artists and creatives on the leading edge of what many believe will be the next Great Awakening, as artists rise up to take their place to reveal God’s glory on this earth. Will you join those artists and creatives in making his praise glorious? Follow the Spirit’s leading in your life and reveal Christ through the BEaUty you create!!

If you’ve enjoyed Create-A-Day, be sure to like me on Facebook as I will be using that as my main platform for sharing resources of ARTistry, CREATivity, and BEaUty in the future.

In case you missed the excitement, here’s the Create-A-Day 2015 year in review:

Top series:

Top 20 individual posts:

If you’d like to explore resources from the past year, I’ve grouped them so you can explore by category:

Or you can simply click here and work your way down through wonderful plethora of creative resources! I hope you’ve enjoyed our year of creativity. If you find any dead links, comment and let me know so I can keep these resources as current as possible. Don’t forget to visit again and please use these resources for your church or ministry.

And don’t forget: Make His praise GLORIOUS!!

Blessings of ARTistry, CREATivity & BEaUty, Jody


God's Creative Gift by Jody ThomaeJody Thomae is the author of God’s Creative Gift—Unleashing the Artist in You, a devotional book with Bible studies to nurture the creative spirit within and to serve as a resource for creative Christians, artists, musicians and worshippers. She has been involved in worship arts ministry since 1997, coordinating artistic involvement in church services and regional worship events through dance, drama, poetry and fine arts. She performs, teaches, choreographs, preaches, coordinates and leads workshops in the area of creativity, spirituality and embodied prayer. JodyThomaeCDcoverart_FA_printShe has also recently released a devotional CD, Song of the Beloved. Her passion is for the revelation of God to be made more real through the prophetic use of the arts in church and formational ministry. It is her desire to portray the message of Christ’s desperate and unfailing love for His people to help sustain the hearts of the broken and weary. Life scriptures include Psalm 27; Isaiah 50:4-7; and Zephaniah 3:14-17.

Create-A-Day: your daily dose of creativity #252 — Visioning the Invisible


VisionAs we wind down our year of creative posts,  I want to direct you to a blog post from my friend Dave Weiss of AMOK Arts entitled “Vision… Can You See it?” This post is a short but powerful word of encouragement to artists and creatives about moving forward in the dreams, callings, visions and destinies to which God is calling you.

It is my prayer that as this year unwinds you will seek the Lord’s guidance and will for the coming year. What creative destiny has He placed on your heart? What has He called you to for the season ahead? Make yourself “present” to God and seek what he has for you in this present moment! Continue reading

Create-A-Day: your daily dose of creativity #228 — The Advent Door


S x wreathThe Advent Door is the blog of artist, author and minister Jan Richardson. For several years now Jan has posted weekly Advent meditations with her artwork and poetry. The meditations are based on each year’s lectionary cycle. You can sift down through the posts and be inspired by her BEaUtiful artwork and thoughtful poetry, just make sure you hit ‘older posts’ at the bottom to continue down through the posts she has made over the years. She has much to share to take us through the CHRISTmas season. Resource ideas for corporate or personal worship — a great way to prayerfully and intentionally move through the season. Continue reading

Create-A-Day: your daily dose of creativity #225 — 52 Weeks of Prophetic Art with Grace Bailey


G BaileyGrace Bailey is a prophetic artist on a mission! Ministering out of her home church in Ballarat, Victoria (Australia) and at a variety of conferences, she has set herself a goal of 52 Weeks of Prophetic Art. Yes! 52 weeks of live painting during worship! What an amazing goal and ministry. I have been following her since I first found her last Spring on her Facebook page and have been deeply blessed by the artwork she is painting. You can also follow her journey here on her website.

"Valley of Dry Bones" by Grace Bailey (C) 2015

“Valley of Dry Bones? Ha! piece of Cake!”
by Grace Bailey (C) 2015

The painting on your right is “Valley of Dry Bones? Ha! piece of Cake!”

Won’t you take a moment to consider? What are the dry bones in your life? Are they dreams and visions that seem to have died? Are they broken, wounded places in your spirit? Are they mistakes from your past that still fill you with shame? While you examine this painting, won’t you slowly and prayerfully read this prophetic prayer adapted from Ezekiel 37 with me and other fellow artists praying this prayer with us today? Continue reading

Create-A-Day: your daily dose of creativity #221 — Why Advent is Important to Artists


S x baby hand

“My encouragement to all artists of faith is to see every creative act you do during this Advent season as a breathtaking remembrance of God’s loving incarnation to us.” ~Manuel Luz Continue reading

Create-A-Day: your daily dose of creativity #216 — Advent Illustrated


Sara laughedI LOVE the idea I’m sharing today! Sara Laughed is a fun and creative blog and this year she is doing a Bible journaling challenge called Advent Illustrated. Throughout the Advent season (from November 29th to December 24th), Sara will share a Bible verse, starting with Genesis and extending to the nativity story. She will also provide creative prompts for folks who need a little bit more inspiration. Everyone is encouraged to share their art journal project on her Facebook page or on Instagram with the hashtag #AdventIllustrated. Continue reading

Create-A-Day: your daily dose of creativity #213 — The Seventy


National Book MonthAs we wind down our focus on books for artists, creatives and worshipers, I want to direct you to a new book that came out just this month!

The Seventy: A Movement of Creativity in the Earth by Pastor Bernard Boulton is based on a prophetic prayer he spoke over his congregation in 2009.

SeventyThis book announces a movement of creativity rising in the earth during the second decade of the twenty first century. The God of creativity who created the heavens and the earth and created mankind in His image is raising up and sending out a remnant of creative artists who have seen God with a pure heart and have a call on their lives to release the love of God through creative expression.

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Create-A-Day: your daily dose of creativity #212 — The Creative Epiphany


National Book MonthThe month of October and National Book Month are coming to a close, dear friends. I hope you’ve found some books to add to your creative library!

The Creative EpiphanyI’ve shared The Creative Epiphany blog of artist Jo Ann Brown-Scott previously. You can see that here. I want to direct you to a specific post about her book, entitled The Creative Epiphany: Gifted Minds, Grand Realizations, which delves into the creative minds of 19 artists with stories of their personal encounter with “Epiphany.” In her post celebrating January 6th, the Day of Epiphany, she talks about her book and ends with this wonderful thought-provoking quote:

. . . an epiphany brings information  –  an enlightening message of some variety  –  that you did not have before. A missing piece in your plans. And you needed it to move forward. It is of great help to you and utmost importance that you pay attention to it. There are some keys to accommodating the arrival of the coveted epiphany – the best one is to remain open and present, living in the now, aware and alert to all possibilities. Keep a receptive mind, engaged and involved in life. Be hopeful. Have faith.

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Create-A-Day: your daily dose of creativity #211 — Arts Ministry & More!


National Book MonthNational Book Month is winding down! And we have THREE books—all for artists and creatives in church ministry! I know many creatives feel like the church has let them down, but these books help artists AND pastors walk through the process of starting a worship arts ministry together. All three make a strong case for the use of arts in our churches. Here they are and what others are saying about them!

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Create-A-Day: your daily dose of creativity #204 — Finding Divine Inspiration & Creative Church Handbook


National Book MonthNational Book Month continues with more books for creatives, artists and worshipers!!

Arts advocate J. Scott McElroy is the author of two works on creativity. In Finding Divine Inspiration: Working with the Finding Divine InspirationHoly Spirit in Your Creativity, McElroy encourages his readers to work in collaboration with Holy Spirit in their creative process and provides a strong Biblical and historical perspective for the Holy Spirit’s role in creativity. The book also includes interviews with painter Thomas Blackshear, Dan Haseltine from Jars of Clay, Peter Furler of Newsboys, and writer/producer Buzz McLaughlin.

Creative ChurchCreative Church Handbook: Releasing the Power of the Arts in Your Congregation is McElroy’s latest release. It includes practical advice for churches wanting to add greater levels or artistry and creativity to their services. He also provides guidelines for establishing a worship arts ministry, as well as advice on how to impact your community through the arts. Continue reading

Create-A-Day: your daily dose of creativity #201 — Gently Awakened


National Book MonthWe continue National Book Month with more books for artists, creatives and worshipers!

Gently Awakened: The Influence of Faith on Your Artistic Journey by Sara Joseph is a wonderful book of transparency from the heart of an artist who has surrendered her gifts to God! Sara shares her passion behind writing this book:

“Aware of how testimonies always encouraged me, whether Gently awakenedI heard them in church or read them in a book, I wondered if perhaps my story would encourage someone else. This book is part memoir interspersed with color images of art and poetry. It is an account of some of my experiences as an artist and a testament to God’s incredible faithfulness. His unchanging character is reason enough for you to confidently pursue art as an expression of your faith.”

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Create-A-Day: your daily dose of creativity #200 — Journeyartfully


National Book MonthNational Book month continues with books for creatives, artists and worshipers!

Pattie Ann Hale is the author of Journeyartfully: Secrets for Living an Artful Life. Here is the description from her website:

“This thought-provoking and life-shifting book by artist and Journeyartfullyteacher, Pattie Ann Hale, is an invitation to live artfully. The artful life is a deeply spiritual life which brings those who will embark upon it into a deeper understanding of creation, God’s heart, community, and themselves. This book will open one to new doors of creativity, love, soulfulness and spiritual encounter through the sacredness of everyday living, seeing divine nature in the entirety of life.”

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Create A Day: your daily dose of creativity #198 — An Army Arising


National Book MonthEnjoying our book focus? Hope so! Because there’s lots more books on the way!

ArmyToday’s feature is An Army Arising: Why Artists are on the Frontlines of the Next Move of God by Christ John Otto. It is a very inspiring book. If you are an artist or creative in need of “the big picture,” this is a great read as it helps you see the bigger picture of God’s kingdom coming to earth through our artistic offerings!

Otto works with artists through Belonging House of Boston, Massachusetts where creative worship is being used to glorify God and advance His kingdom!

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Create-A-Day: your daily dose of creativity #196 — Painter of Light


National Book MonthContinuing our focus on books for creatives, artists and worshipers, I want to point you to Billion Dollar Painter: The Triumph and Tragedy of Thomas Kinkade, Painter of Light by G. Eric Kuskey.

I enjoyed this honest review from Amazon:

“This is not the most sophisticated book. It’s not the most comprehensive book. But it is a really fascinating biography told from the point of view of a man who was a close friend Kinkadeand colleague of painter Thomas Kinkade through the best and worst of times. I actually had a hard time putting the book down due to its compelling narrative arc — naive but brilliant painter and his two pals dream up a little company that turns into a multi-billion dollar enterprise, before the wheels fall off.
Some may criticize the book for being too soft on Kinkade himself, letting him off the hook for some of the financial damage his company did to gallery dealers and soft-pedaling some of the painter’s vices. But I think readers can read between the lines of the author’s account and get a pretty full and interesting picture of the Painter of Light, who kept his hopeful gaze on the morning glow even as dusk closed in…”

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Create-A-Day: your daily dose of creativity #195 — Books of Matt Tommey


National Book MonthContinuing our National Book Month focus on books for creatives, artists and worshipers, I’d like to introduce you to several books from Matt Tommey of the Worship Studio.

UnlockingThe first is Unlocking the Heart of the Artist: A Practical Guide to Fulfilling Your Creative Calling in the KingdomAccording to Jeanne Randall, President of Masterpiece Christian Arts Foundation, “It’s the Purpose-Driven Life for Artists.” I love that it touches on the importance of working towards healing and wholeness. There is also a companion guide resource with journal prompts and project ideas to help you on your healing journey.

Creativity TommeyCreativity According to the Kingdom: Connecting With Heaven to Create With God and Release Transformation is Tommey’s more recent release. I love what this Amazon reviewer had to say about the book:  “Matt Tommey’s earthy and challenging teachings on creativity in the Kingdom are wonderful. He raises the bar to create with God instead of struggling to create for God. It is encouraging and uplifting.”

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Create-A-Day: your daily dose of creativity #194 — Books of Artist Dave Weiss


National Book MonthContinuing our focus on books for creatives, artists and worshipers, I wanted to share the books of Dave Weiss of AMOK Arts. I’ve shared several resources from Dave this year, and here’s two more great resources he offers!!

AMOKRunning AMOK: Creative Musings for the Creative Hands of the Body of Christ is his latest offering. It is available through Amazon in both print and Kindle format. Kindle version is currently FREE for Kindle subscribers or $2.99 if not.

Ministering to the Creative Soul: a Manifesto on Ministry to Creatives and the People Who Love Them is Dave’s other offering. The Kindle version is also free to Kindle subscribers and $.99 for non-subscribers.

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Create-A-Day: your daily dose of creativity #190 — Breath for the Bones


National Book MonthOctober is National Book Month so from now to the end of October we’ll be focusing on books for artists, creatives and worshipers!

Breath for the BonesIn Breath for the Bones (Art, Imagination and Spirit:
A Reflection of Creativity and Faith) author Luci Shaw “challenges all of us to re-think how faith informs art and art can animate faith. Here is a fresh breath of encouragement to imaginative minds. . . . A clear guide to the theological framework of creativity and the call for active participation in God’s own creative life.”

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Create-A-Day: your daily dose of creativity #186 — Books of Rory Noland


National Book MonthContinuing our focus on books for creatives, artists and worshipers in light of National Book Month next month. . .

We began Create-A-Day postings with Rory Noland, author of Heart of the Artist, way back in January with our very first edition!

In addition to Heart of the Artist, Noland has several more books for artists and worshipers:

Worship on EarthHis newest book is Worship on Earth as it is in Heaven: Exploring Worship as a Spiritual Discipline. It explores both private and corporate worship. Want to go deeper in your worship? Then this is a great choice! Continue reading

Create-A-Day: your daily dose of creativity #184 — An Altar in the World


National Book MonthOctober is National Book Month, so I’ll be posting links to books for creatives, artists and worshipers the rest of September and throughout October!

AltarNew York Times Best Seller An Altar in the World by Barbara Brown Taylor takes spirituality out of the box. I love the way she suggests very non-traditional, creative ways to encounter God. As an artist or creative, her book will leave you with new ways to develop your own spiritual practices to commune and worship God.

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