With Lebanon currently being impacted by war, a refugee crisis, and more, stories of beauty can be hard to come across.
For ministries active in Lebanon, meeting the spiritual, physical and emotional needs of a country just trying to survive can take its toll.
Horizons International’s Pierre Houssney said that despite the trauma the country faces due to the fallenness of man in a sinful world, God has still created a world that contains beauty.
“And I think that beauty speaks to people’s hearts about God, especially when it’s not just beauty, you know, for beauty’s sake, but when it’s beauty in the name of Christ,” Houssney said. “In the midst of the trauma, in the midst of the poverty, we’re trying to give opportunities for believers, who have artistic gifts, to have a prophetic voice through their art to the society, so that we can be calling out for Christ in the midst of the crisis.”
Some of these opportunities for creating beauty are fine art classes offered by Horizons International.
Horizons International has had up to 35 students at one time participating in these classes revolving around painting or drawing.
Students in visual arts classes had the opportunity to participate in an exhibition in Beirut called “His Touch.”
People from the community were invited to see the work of beginner students as well as 10 different Christian artists.
Graphic design classes offer a more practical element, allowing students to learn a skill they could use in their everyday lives.
On the worship side of things, music theory and classes in instruments are helping raise up worship leaders for local churches.
One unit teaching guitar, piano, and drums to beginners looking to lead worship at their church had 70 people participate.
“And so this new generation needs training, and they need, you know, they need mentoring, and they need to have those skills so that they can, they can lead their congregations in worship,” Houssney said.
Though some may have more trouble connecting visual arts directly with ministry, Houssney says social media helps make that connection more clear.
Beautiful videos that contain scripture messages alongside visual art tend to get a higher viewership.
When posts like that get more views, they can potentially bring more people to Christ.
“And so it needs to be beautiful. It needs to be excellent, it needs to be well done. And that’s what our Lord deserves,” Houssney said. “That’s not just what social media deserves.”
Currently, Horizons International has to spread resources between humanitarian aid like food and medicine and projects that glorify God through the arts.
In the midst of the crisis in Lebanon, pray for God to provide the resources for canvases, studio spaces, art instructors and more.
Houssney also says what an organization like Horizons International is here for is to see God open more and more hearts to the Gospel.
“So I’m not praying that the church would have less hardship. I’m not praying for you know, for less, you know, political chaos. What I’m praying for is that, through it all, people would continue to open their hearts, and that God will be glorified.”
Learn more about the work of Horizons International in Lebanon by visiting https://www.horizonsinternational.org/lebanon-crisis.