repeat the sounding joy | year in review


We’re coming up on our one-year anniversary here at made | new, and in the grand tradition of online lists, here’s a look back at some of the most popular posts of the year:

excellence | identity

the artist in church

ordinary designs

this beautiful altar | surrendering the creative process

hideously beautiful | a defence of horror

content warning

en-courage the fearful artist

glimmers & resolutions

For those of you who’ve been along for the ride, we’re grateful to you, and we just want you to know that we plan to repeat ourselves even more in 2017.

Repetition gets a bad rap for a variety of reasons. Mostly, it gets annoying (although classics like “Seagulls, Stop It Now” will probably carry us onward for a good few years now). There’s no surprise. The new is more interesting. The more you see something, the more stale it becomes. Our worship must be fresh every morning; sing a new song, right? That’s in the Bible.

The Psalms, that grand exercise in reiteration, is also in the Bible. Also, admonitions to remember Christ as often as we eat and drink, and to tattoo Scripture everywhere you look so that we’re always being reminded of God.

Then there’s seasons, and the movement of the earth around the sun, and sunrises and sunsets, and the cycle of water and growth and death and rebirth… Seems like repetition is the lifeblood of the world. It’s definitely our lifeblood here.

We are a forgetful people, and our work is to sing it again, dance it again, paint it again, create it again, until by reminders we remember.

That’s how habits are formed and life is found, in the redoing, in seasons and traditions, and practice of skill and patience. New life is, paradoxically, always new, and there is nothing new under the sun. The Gospel is the same day after day, and mercies repeat every morning, and we pray without ceasing, and Christ is always pleading for us before the throne of God, and the creatures say it again:

Holy, holy, holy is the Lord God Almighty, who was, and is, and is to come.

Heaven will be the great Repeating.

We need to hear over and over that God loves us, so that we end up believing it at some point, and we need to hear “I forgive you, go and sin no more” over and over again until we love the Forgiver more than the sin.

At the heart of made | new is the idea that the great story of the Gospel is being retold, over and over, by artists of all disciplines everywhere. This is why we exist: to repeat the sounding joy.

So raise a glass with us to another new year, and may you and yours prosper in Christ as we wait for the coming of our Lord and the grand Making New.

From all of us here,
Chris Wheeler
Desiree Hassler
Allison Keeport
Andy Decker
Hattie Buell


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