18x24, Oil on Canvas
It's been a while since my last post. I've had some computer problems and am still without my main computer. I did notice that without the computer in my studio I was able to finish a painting more quickly! hmmm. Maybe need to rethink the location of the computer? yup.
Anyway, I finished this commissioned piece for a friend of mine (actually two friends) Karis and her hubby Nathan. They were MK's with me in the Philippines and just happen to live near Dallas. It was neat getting to catch up with them and their beautiful children. It was neat for me to look across the table at some friends and think, "They knew me when I was in the Philippines." That is a real treasure to me.
Karis had given me the challenge of putting all the Solas of the Reformation (the 5 painting series I had done for Dallas Theological Seminary) together in ONE painting but still staying with the coloring (red, blue and bright yellow). Her one request was to not have any figures in it. It was a challenge but I actually was looking forward to this painting for a long time.
It comes from Exodus where Moses sees the burning bush in the distance and decides that he must get closer to it. We know the story from there that God speaks to him through the bush and Moses literally has to take his sandals off because the ground in Holy (in the painting there is a red mist around the tree to try to get at that mystery).
God speaks (Sola Scriptura). Moses removes his sandals because of the glory of God (Sola deo Gloria) surrounding the bush. God gives a message of faith (Sola Fide) and grace (Sola Gracia). Moses has to believe by faith that God will use him to help the Israelites. He is given a grace in Aaron and in his staff and ultimately Moses is showing God's grace to the people. The bush (tree) is a reminder that someday our God will hang upon a tree for all of us and that will be holy ground. It will be a place of faith and grace pouring out of Jesus (Sola Christos).
I took the liberty of making the bush a tree. After researching the kind of bushes that grow in the desert they are usually tall (as tall as a man) trees and very scrubby. I like the symbolism in that too. God speaks to us in the driest, hardest places. Look how many times God uses the desert for a time of closeness with God (i.e. Moses, Elijah, Paul and Jesus). I look at my life and think about the times God has really spoken to me and it has been when I truly am thirsty and dry and I finally say, "I need you God."
Karis, I pray we can always be friends and remember each other as we were (goofballs) and see the women we've become (bigger goofballs). God bless you sweet friends.