Personally, I have never attended an Easter sunrise service. But my wife has told me how powerful they have been for her. Perhaps it’s the anticipation of glorious Easter—when we get to celebrate the resurrection of our Lord. Perhaps it’s the magic of witnessing the light of a new day—joining the morning birds to sing praises to God. There must be something special for christians to celebrate this way for so many years. However, I bet they were nothing like what the disciples experienced one beautiful morning.
The Gospel of John has a wonderful post-resurrection story. The last chapter reads like an epilogue of sorts. Peter and some disciples decide to go fishing in the night. They catch nothing. At daybreak, Jesus appears on the shore. He instructs them to cast nets again. They catch an abundance of fish. Realizing their Lord has returned, they quickly sail to shore where Jesus shares a fireside meal of bread and fish with them. Jesus then specifically speaks with Peter. Jesus asks, “do you love me” three times – one time for each betrayal Peter committed on the night of Jesus’ death. And after Peter responds “yes,” Jesus instructs him to “feed my sheep.” How wonderful that morning must have been.
In this painting, I tried to imagine that beautiful morning meal. The composition is both macro and micro. Brother sun rises over the world’s horizon—illuminating the sea with dancing light. The reflections swell to the shore where we see the abandoned boat and a circle of fellowship. Looking close, you can see a communion of grace taking place.
This is more than a sunrise breakfast. It is morning worship. God’s people abandon the work of the day, gather together to break bread and be near the Lord again. In this circle, Christ makes himself known to us, teaches us, and forgives our sins. Christ feeds us and calls us to act in love for the world.
Today, the circle spans around the world. In fact, this painting was commissioned by a patron living in Singapore. The Resurrected One calls us, from all shores, to come together and dine in grace. Wherever you are, may you answer the Lord’s loving call and join in the feast. And may the song of Alleluia, be heard all over the world.