What’s going on America? It’s been a while Huh? I thought summer was suppose to be chill and boring once you grow up and become an adult, right? WRONG! This summer has been packed with adventures, weddings, traveling and more traveling. Over the last week I was in Columbus, Ohio for the Assemblies of God National Fine Arts Festival.  Growing up in the AG, Fine Arts has been a part of my life for years. From drama, photography, music and even human videos, it’s in my blood. I’ve done it all.  For those of you who are unfamiliar with the Assemblies of God and Fine Arts, here is a little re-cap video from this year’s festival. FA is discovering, developing and deloying your gifts for ministry. The best way I have found to describe nationals is, America’s Got Talent for Church Kids. There’s everything from vocals, dance, photography, show choir, to puppets, poetry songwriting, Walking the halls of the convention always provides some head turning.
I have officially reached the age cap for the festival and this year I was invited to be a guest evaluator. Nervous didn’t even describe my feelings. I remember getting the email from Jack and Lori (the festivals coordinators) like it was yesterday. I was floored, honored and humbled. As a past national fine arts award of merit winner, it meant TONS to me that they would even consider inviting me to come and invest into the lives of hundreds of students from around the nation. I’ve stood where they’ve stood. I’ve practice hours upon hours and worked my tail off. It’s not easy, but for me it was one of the most rewarding experiences I’ve been a part of. 2014-08-02_0002 While in Columbus I had the pleasure of evaluating with some of the Finest. After receiving their comments and critics for years, it was pretty exciting to finally put a face and name with their sloppy handwriting. 😉 Evan G. Cooper dot com readers please give a round of applause for my new friends Lauren, Chase and Lori. I think we laughed more than anything. We had a blast together and my week in Columbus was greater than expected because I got to spend it with them. 2014-08-02_0004 Friday night was the Celebration service for the Festival. It’s like the Oscars of the event. This year the event was hosted by former Fine Arts baby and American Idol contestant Angie Miller.  We were priveleged enough to have a student from our group take home a national award of merit this year. I have known Garrison for years. Watching him work year after year as he entered photo after photo has finally paid off.  I couldn’t be more excited for him and his win. Thanks for letting me have a small part in helping you achieve one of your goals. 2014-08-02_0003 Writing comments on a sheet of paper for 10 hours a day straight, 3 days in a row is beyond exhausting, but we ALWAYS make time for a little fun. Kings Island, Here We Come! 2014-08-02_0001 Oh and Jenis Ice Cream.  Goat Cheese and Black Cherries, YES PLEASE!!!!! 2014-08-02_0005 With all of that being said, Fine Arts is more than a comptetion as I mentioned above. It’s about developing your gifts and talents for ministry. To be in the same city with 12,000 talented individuals, watching their performances, listening to their songs is nothing short of amazing. But having the opportunity to invest in their lives was certainly the icing on the cake. Thanks Columbus for having me. It’s been a pleasure!! I’ll see you guys in Orlando next year, well If Jack and Lori will have be back. 😉 Oh I’ll be starting a campaign very soon… I’m determined to host the Celebration Service next year.  Move over Angie!!!