Lillian Trotter: Many Beautiful Things

Roger W. Lowther

August 1, 2018Tokyo, Japan

"Many Beautiful Things" (2015), a documentary now available on iTunes, tells the story of Lilias Trotter (1853-1928), an extremely gifted artist, who was acclaimed by the top art critic of the day to be possibly England's top living artist. However, Lilias decided to give up her art and move to North Africa as a missionary. Give up? Why?

As I study the life and writings of Lilias, I have mixed feelings. I am inspired by her fresh views of God and the gospel, but I am also sad. What would have happened if a community of Christian artists had come alongside her and encouraged her to use her phenomenal artistic gifts in ministry? What if someone had shown her that it is possible to be a missionary AND an artist? What if she realized she did not have to choose one or the other? Of course, we cannot judge whether she made a good decision or not, but we what CAN do is affirm that networks like the MAKE Collective are desperately needed! We need each other to make good decisions in our lives and ministries that fit our giftings, passions, and opportunities.