By Kim Eidel
With praise and worship music playing in the background, an atmosphere of peace and serenity settles over the studio. Various brush strokes whisper over painted backgrounds on canvas while pent-up emotional bondage is placed at the feet of Jesus. Dusty Smith, a youth leader, teacher, and prophetic artist in Logan County silently prays over the troubled youth who have gathered in the studio seeking help for personal issues. Many young people seek Dusty for guidance, who in turn trains and directs their attention to the cross through the gift of painting.
Through the leading of the Lord, Dusty encounters individuals who suffer from depression, tendencies for self-harm, emotional needs, and other similar type struggles. Part of her ministry involves setting up “healing classes” where students and those who are afflicted can take all the hurt they have inside and express what they are feeling on canvas while worship music permeates the air…the combination of surrendering these emotions with an open heart to Jesus and painting expressions that words cannot utter help make that connection. Many testimonies have emerged that God healed them through art; when anxiety starts to surface, these individuals have learned to give it God and begin to paint and His peace washes over them as they pour their hearts out to him through artistic expression.
Because Dusty is an art teacher (and she teaches other classes as well) at Beth Haven Christian School in Omar, WV, she has an art studio handy to offer these types of classes. Healing art classes are available as needed at the school during lunch and after school. She also has after-school classes in her church and in her home. Dusty has a heart for the hurting and she is deliberate and flexible with her time in allowing the Holy Spirit to use her to bring about healing, restoration, and deliverance to those in distress.
But, like with anything, the devil knew her heart and the outcome of an effective ministry she was to have. With that in mind, he tried to destroy what God would later use for His Glory. Five years before she started painting, she got carpal tunnel in both hands so bad that they were both numb. Doctors were puzzled because she didn’t have a job or hobby that usually is the culprit for this type of ailment. After a successful surgery and recovery on both hands, Dusty continued in the ministry she had been a part of for many years. Dusty was a Youth Leader for the Regional Church of God in Delbarton (the same church the “Jesus is Better” revival started in 2016 in the Southern part of WV) where she ministers to about 65 students. With her gift of flair and creativity, she designed and produced many dramas and human videos that her youth group participated in and ministered to others.
It was during a lifestyle of prayer and delving deeper in the Word combined with a refusal to limit God that an urge to learn to paint began. Up until this time, she never did any drawing or painting. Dusty shared her heart with her husband who went out and purchased a couple of canvases, paints, and brushes for her. She sat down to paint and the ideas, themes, and a knowing that didn’t make sense in the natural took place. She approached this season fully surrendered unto the Lord and listened and allowed herself to be led by the Spirit. The outcome was so worth trying something new…a finished painting sat at her finger-tips that amazed anyone who saw it knowing she had no prior training or knowledge of the craft. Later, when she discovered that this was an on-going occurrence and when her human abilities became limited by what she envisioned and what she could actually do, she watched videos on painting techniques and studied up on specific methods that would aid in her endeavors.
Dusty had always been a very visual person, but when she started to paint it seemed like her vision became stronger and images became as vivid as a photograph and she was able to paint what she saw. She started to feel led to go to the Bible and tie the vision she received with the Word of God. This continued on for a while and when the Lord saw that she was being faithful with what she had and where she was, he advanced her gift to the next phase…Dusty started operating in the Prophetic Art.
When asked what is the prophetic art, Dusty answered, “Prophesy edifies; it offers God’s children a word of encouragement and helps people with their walk with the Lord.” She went on to declare that part of her ministry is to make the invisible God as visible to others through her painting. As she draws closer to God daily through the Word, prayer, and worship the Lord gives her a vision and she paints what is in her spirit. Dusty elaborated, “Many times the Lord gives me a visual of something He wants someone to know; to feel something He wants someone to feel; to see what He wants someone to see; or to be aware of something He wants them to be aware of.” She takes this visual and brings it to life on canvas and presents the visual message to whom it was intended.
Many times people will ask if she will paint something during the worship service. Dusty participates and basks in the Spirit that is present during the worship service and paints what the Spirit inspires her to create, leading to an inspirited masterpiece.
Dusty specifically and deliberately seeks and allows the Spirit to lead her. She surrenders unto Him and chooses to be His hands, His feet, and His voice. As part of that journey, she records and saves the ideas He gives her in a notebook and sometimes He has made known to her a particular image to be put on canvas, or He tells her one of the ideas will be used soon.
A perfect example of one of these sketches in a notebook being used was when the Lord gave her a vision of angel wings. Not long after that someone came up to her and asked if she would do a memorial painting for someone who had passed away. She immediately knew the angel wings were to be incorporated into the painting. As she was working on the piece while praising the Lord and spending time in His presence, she kept hearing a particular word and discerned that this word was to be a part of the painting. When this happens, which it has often, she finds a way to integrate the word into the art piece because it is a personal word from the Lord for that individual.
Another example that made an impact on quite a few families with the angel wings was when she was asked by family members to paint a “miscarriage painting memorial”. Dusty was led to paint a woman holding a baby; the baby had angel wings and was holding a piece of the mother’s heart. This painting was titled, “Missing Piece of Me” and really ministered to these women. Because this piece hit close to home to so many women, 50 different families asked for a copy of this painting and purchased it to hang in their homes.
As wonderful as this all sounds, some may be inquisitive of her background and her personal testimony. It may be a shock to some to know that Dusty was a “bus kid”. When she was eight years old, the Regional Church of God had a bus ministry and the only way she was able to attend church was through the church bus. She gave her heart to the Lord during these years and became involved with kid’s church, then later with the youth group and participated in dramas, plays, and the various events that took place. She was faithful and hungry for the Lord. Because of her zeal and spiritual maturity, Dusty taught Sunday school when she was just 16 years old. By the time she was 18 years of age, God had called her to outreach ministry and she has been working in ministry ever since. The encouraging thing about this is that Dusty is living proof that the efforts churches go through involving bus ministry can be highly effective. Dusty mentioned that she wouldn’t know where she would be today if were not for the church providing transportation for children and for those who lack a vehicle.
Dusty is very appreciative of the church where God planted her, and for the pastor she serves under. She is especially appreciative that her pastor and his wife support the unorthodox and creative ways in which the Spirit flows through and uses her. A pastor encouraging and supporting ministry through the people of the church is vital to a healthy and successful church.
In retrospect, allowing God to move in any way in which He chooses and not limiting Him and trapping Him in a “box” of narrow-mindedness is one sure way that we are flowing in the new and the here-and-now. Allowing him full reign and deciding to be “all-in” is a must for one to spiritually develop and for our churches to grow and flow. This is the mind-set Dusty has and the foundation of her thriving ministry. When asked for her advice on starting out or growing in ministry, Dusty strongly suggests to seek His face and to not limit Him. She goes on to say that when you have a vision for something, pray about it and back it up with the Word of God…then do it. “Don’t say God is not this or that. God is an amazing creative God who made the rainbow, the universe, orbits, space, and so on, and so on.” she emphatically states. “Don’t think something is too out there or too different or too hard. God will use what you have and make up the difference. Don’t see Him through someone else’s eyes… see Him through your eyes; after all, He made you different and unique, and your relationship with Him is different and unique.”
Dusty passionately goes on to say, “Know and develop a special relationship with Jesus personally; that combined with you embracing who you are and your unique perspective and interaction with your Creator…that is when things will start to get wild. When it does, let it happen. Get so close to God that you know what it looks like when He smiles. Get so close to God that you know what His voice sounds like…when He wants you to intercede for someone…get so close to Him that you can feel Him, smell Him, and have an instant knowing when His presence is there.”
Dusty ends her interview with another piece of good spiritual advice…”Stop putting limits on God. He is more than words on a page; He is more than just a church service; more than a revival…He is your heavenly Father who created you for a specific purpose.”
It is with this purpose in mind combined with knowing who He is that should inspire us to relentlessly pursue the One who knows everything about us, including the number of hairs on our heads.
Your heavenly Father divinely knows you, wholeheartedly accepts you, and dramatically loves you. After-all… Jesus thought you were worth dying for. God did not create a waste of space or a seat warmer. He created you to be used to advance His Kingdom… He created a masterpiece… He created- YOU!
If you would like to contact Dusty Smith for more information, to inquire of a painting, to schedule a special painting class, or to book her for a prophetic worship painting engagement, her contact information is listed below.
Facebook: Dusty Smith and Dusty Smith, Prophetic Artist
If you would like to speak to Beth Haven Christian School or to make a donation (scholarships for students unable to attend due to finances) the contact information is listed below.
Beth Haven Christian School
140 Beth Haven Rd
Omar, WV. 25612
Kim Eidel is an Apostolic Minister and founder of Arise Ministries — a non-profit religious organization and its divisions — that teaches the “how-to’s” of faith and practice.
With a mandate to serve, encourage, empower, and disciple through speaking engagements, live events, writing, and broadcasting, Kim equips others to grow spiritually and to develop a closer and more personal relationship with the Lord.
Kim is an ordained minister through the Church of God (Cleveland, TN) and is the Executive Pastor at the Refuge Church of God in New Martinsville, WV and has a degree in education. She is also the author of several published articles and enjoys teaching the principles of God’s Kingdom.
Kim and her husband, George, live in West Virginia with their four children.