Jake Weidmann’s Faith Drives His Pursuit of Excellence
Credit: Jake Weidmann
Jake Weidmann is a Christian artist who creates various works of art across a variety of mediums, with the purpose of applying his faith in Jesus Christ and inspiration from the Bible to those works. You can see it in the results he achieves.
Primarily an autodidact, it is reflected in the uniqueness of his works. With the help of God, he has developed an excellence in his projects that has resulted in a growing awareness of who he is and the quality of the work.
He says this on his blog:
My teachers said that they had nothing that they could teach me and so I was allowed to “do my own thing.” I didn’t need a teacher. My art pieces developed me as much as I developed them. This is where the real learning happened. Of course I welcomed anything that anyone would teach me, but I found that being a student does not depend on the presence of a teacher. I learned the power of being self-taught. Each medium became my professor; trial and error was my curriculum; and struggle was my tuition.
The point of me sharing that isn’t that all people should attempt to learn in the same way Weidmann did, but to understand that however they developed their skills and expertise, the key for Christians is to strive for excellence and to use the Holy Scriptures to guide us in our vision and actions concerning whatever we put our hands to.
Source of his talent
Weidmann acknowledges that from an early age he was aware that God was the source of his talent or “giftedness.” He said he was raised in a Christian home that had a deep love for God.
He also states that his “art became my worship to Him.” I think this is an extremely important thing to learn for many Christians. The idea of what we put our hands to being our worship to Jesus Christ, would help any serious and honest Christian to become far better at whatever they do. For Weidmann, Jesus Christ is the reason he does his art.
Identifying myself with God as a creator and originator galvanized my relationship with Him in ways I had never thought possible. I know that the work He has done on me inwardly is directly reflected in my artwork.
I really like how he connects the fact that the inward work of God is revealed outwardly in how we live our lives and the work we do.
Finally, he reveals his outlook on what art has the ability to do. He concludes:
A work of art has that rare ability to be the perfect silent facilitator to conversation. In a world that is flying by, it stands still and constant for all time; preserving within it each thought it conveys. If my art is to be timeless then the truth expressed through it should be timeless as well.
His work on classic hymns
There are a wide variety of examples of Weidmann’s work across a number of different mediums, but in this article I want to focus on his work on the classic hymn series, looking at Thomas Obadiah Chisholm’s ‘Great is Thy Faithfulness’.
In the video below he tells the story behind the hymn and how it inspirted him to create art from it.
Weidmann mentions that many of the issues facing Chisolm and the generation he lived in, are similar issues we face today. Among them were a divided nation, hard economic times, and enduring a pandemnic.
He says that Chisolm got his key inspiration for the song from Lamentations 3: 22-24:
22 It is of the Lord’s mercies that we are not consumed, because his compassions fail not.
23 They are new every morning: great is thy faithfulness.
24 The Lord is my portion, saith my soul; therefore will I hope in him.
The general impetus behind the work of Weidmann in focusing on this particular song is that it not only recongizes the realities of the difficult times we face, but also the hope that we have because of the faithfulness of God concerning His people.
For a look at his classical hymn series, go here.
As Jake Weidmann acknowledges, it is Jesus Christ that gives us the skill and potential we have to accomplish His purpose for us in this life, and to bless us in whatever we put our hand to.
That means in order to reach our full potential we must diligently work within our specialized areas of expertise and continue to improve over time; that takes patience and long suffering to achieve. The key to success is to remain within the parameters of what we are called to do, remaining faithful for the duration of our lives.
It won’t mean there won’t be more than one area of life we are good at, only that we must first build expertise in one area, and from that success expand to other areas.
For example, Jake is most well-known for his work with a pen. From there is branched out into other artistic areas, eventually becoming a public speaker, while also making videos to share with others. He also has designed courses for those interested in learning how to learn the foundations of his style.
We must become very good at one thing before attempting to add to that expertise in another complementary discipline. It doesn’t mean there can’t be any overlap, only that if we get ahead of ourselves, our core area of expertise will suffer from a lack of targeted focus. We must be careful to not prematurely add to our foundational skill, or all that we’re attempting to do will suffer.
As for Jake Weidmann, he’s a great example of taking the talent God has given us and applying our faith to it to bless and encourage people. This isn’t only because he includes works of art related to the Christian faith, but because his passion and commitment to excellence in his chosen medium has earned him the respect of those that are attracted to his work.
That in turn has provided him opportunities to speak to general audiences about his art, while also incorporating the fact it is inspired by Jesus Christ Himself.
Weidmann has leveraged his talent into a solid business that gives glory to God and provides a good living for him and his family. He is no starving artist.