Los Alamos Church of Christ
This morning we are moving to the 5th of our 9 Temperaments.
The Nine Temperaments
--The Intellectual connects through knowing God; there is joy in learning about God.
--The Caregiver connects in serving Jesus. There is joy in serving the needy.
--The Traditionalist connects through the symbols of faith. There is joy in the traditional rituals.
--The Enthusiast connects in the praise of mystery. There is enthusiastic joy in celebration. .
This morning we move to the Sensate temperament…
--The Sensate connects in creating beauty.
--The Contemplative connects in dwelling in the presence of God.
--The Ascetic connects in the discipline of solitude.
--The Naturalist connects through the beauty of nature.
--The Activist connects in the confrontation of wrong.
Congregationally we have been keeping a record of our scores on the Temperament Test. Here are the updated scores.
--The Intellectual - 27
--The Caregiver – 12 – subcategories of specific caregiving - 30
--The Traditionalist - 9
--The Enthusiast - 26
I am excited to discover who we are as a congregation in the sensate temperament. We will take the test in a few minutes.
The sensate connects to God through their senses; taste, touch, smell, sound and sight. The sensate’s heart is drawn closer to God in the appreciation of beauty. God is beauty. God is seen in beauty. There is something in each of us that is awed in the presence of the amazing. For the sensate this is the way they connect to God! Intricate architecture, stirring music, stained glass, sculpture, a delicious banquet, even an inspirational movie… can open the sensate’s heart to connect with God.
Sensate is close to naturalist. But it is different from the naturalist. The naturalist connects through rejoicing in the God’s creation; what is created by God’s hand. The Sensate rejoices in what is created by human hands. The Sensate connects to God when they recognize beauty made by themselves or others.
It gets back to being made in the image of God. Remember the two words used in Genesis 1… Tzelem Elohim translates into English… image of God. The Tzelem Elohim makes us want to be… like God. The creative desires we have are because we are fashioned after the LORD Almighty! Humans are a creative bunch. To be in the Creator’s image moves us to want to create.
--paints a landscape… they recreate the Tzelem Elohim.
--cooks a gourmet dish… savoring the Tzelem Elohim.
--builds a house… constructing just like the Tzelem Elohim.
--takes playdough and makes a figure… mimicking the making man from the dust of the earth.
--shoots a photograph… they capture the Tzelem Elohim
--writes a song… they are singing the Tzelem Elohim.
--performs a drama… they are acting in the Tzelem Elohim.
--dances… they dance to the Tzelem Elohim.
…dabbles in any of the numerous venues of art… that person, bears the Tzelem Elohim.
The sensate reflects God’s image of creativity into the world and reflects praise back to the creator. The Sensate is the mirror which shows our Creator to the world. The Sensate is the reflection of their creations back to the Creator! Art can be a doxology all by itself.
We all have a refrigerator in heaven. On that door, God places our creations. We mimic our LORD when we create. I suspect we all have at least a little bit of Sensate. Perhaps, if we started teaching our kids this concept… we may have more Sensates who love the LORD.
I believe we need to learn to think like this. An artist is an artist because they want to be a creator made in the Tzelem Elohim of the Ultimate Creator. If every time an artist “arts” they do it to the glory of God. That would make a tremendous difference. “As I do my art, I connect to you… Oh, master artisan!” This is the Sensate’s prayer.
The Sensate connects to God in the creation and appreciation of art.
Interesting fact… One of the first places in Scripture, maybe the first time, where the Holy Spirit is said to work in humans is… in art.
Exodus 31:1-5 The LORD said to Moses, "See, I have called by name Bezalel the son of Uri, son of Hur, of the tribe of Judah, and I have filled him with the Spirit of God, (is this pleroopneumatic) with ability and intelligence, with knowledge and all craftsmanship, to devise artistic designs, to work in gold, silver, and bronze, in cutting stones for setting, and in carving wood, to work in every craft.
The Exodus account goes on to explain how Bezalel (Bez a lell) used his Spirit given craftsmanship to build the Tabernacle with all of its artistic beauty. God’s Spirit connected to Bezalel to create the beauty of the Tabernacle.
But Bezalel was not the only one...
Exodus 35:25-26 And every skillful woman spun with her hands, and they all brought what they had spun in blue and purple and scarlet yarns and fine twined linen. All the women whose hearts stirred them to use their skill spun the goats' hair.
Sounds like a quilt ministry…
2 Samuel 23:1-2 Now these are the last words of David: The oracle of David, the son of Jesse, the oracle of the man who was raised on high, the anointed of the God of Jacob, the sweet psalmist of Israel: "The Spirit of the LORD speaks by me; his word is on my tongue.”
If all song writers could connect their music to the LORD, it would change music to his glory.
Psalm 150:1-6 Praise the LORD! Praise God in his sanctuary; praise him in his mighty heavens! Praise him for his mighty deeds; praise him according to his excellent greatness! Praise him with trumpet sound; praise him with lute and harp! Praise him with tambourine and dance; praise him with strings and pipe! Praise him with sounding cymbals; praise him with loud clashing cymbals! Let everything that has breath praise the LORD! Praise the LORD!
Throughout history, magnificent art has been produced in the name of faith. From the Sistine Chapel to the Julia’s castle… the Tzelem Elohim has interacted with the human spirit to create connections between us and the Creator. Christianity without beauty becomes a disembodied religion of the mind. Human artistry has long been employed to meditate the beauty of God. Anything that is going to express the truth of heaven is placed on the big refrigerator in the sky.
I wish I were more Sensate. I wonder if I am a little Sensate. Perhaps, you are a Sensate. Let’s find out. It’s time to take our Sensate Temperament Test…
1. I am passionate about my _______. (activity that involves making stuff) (quilt making, painting, restoration, flower arranging, gardening, cartoons, song writing, piano playing)
2. When I buy a car it is based on its appearance. (smell, color, style, looks cool. Not gas mileage, function, reliability, if you drive a mini-van give yourself a low score.)
3. My home is a reflection of me. (You take time arrange each room around a color theme, the appearance of the beauty of your home is important.)
4. When working with kids you like the crafts part of teaching.
5. You notice the visuals of a movie. (when you watch a movie you notice the colors and art of the scenes. The backgrounds, costumes…)
6. You appreciate the upgrades in our halls. (You want to sit down and enjoy the beauty)
7. When I enter a beautiful church building my heart lifts toward God. (You think the beauty is more important than the function.)
8. I go to arts and crafts fairs.
9. I go to concerts/ theater/ dances because I enjoy them. (not because of your grandkids are in them)
10. I know the names of more colors than the 16 Crayola box.
Let’s check to see how we’ve done… If you had more than 50 points… 60 points… 70 points… That gives us __ Sensates.
I would like to suggest that we sanctify the word “hobby”. Many of us have creative hobbies. Some of them involve the arts and crafts. I guess some make a living in the arts, but most of us do art as a hobby. Let’s not denigrate the idea of hobby as unimportant. Rather, let’s baptize the word hobby. When we are creating we are the Tzelem Elohim. That’s precious. Hobby could be more important than work. This is done by connecting our creative hobby to the Creator.
The challenge to Sensates is to connect the beauty they see in human creation to the God of all creation. A prayer of adoration will serve them well as they offer praise to the God who enables our love of beauty. Without the prayer of adoration the sensate will struggle with the worship of beauty rather than allowing it to connect them to God!
Allow your desire to create to more you to create as the Tzelem Elohim. Connect all you have… all your senses… all your heart and soul and mind and strength in creation to the Creator.
ESV Mark 12:29-30 “Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. And you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.”
My temperament is God’s gift to me.
My temperament is my gift to God.
My temperament is my gift to the body.
My temperament is my gift to the world.
May 29, 2016
Los Alamos Church of Christ