Sunday, August 2, 2015

Playing in Puddles 24x24: Celebrating the Ordinary

24"x24" Oil 
on Deep Edged Canvas
with Palette Knife

The church calendar is deep into the season of Ordinary Time. It is the longest season of the church year, turning into Advent in the fall. Some congregations go off the lectionary script and study biblical texts of their own choosing. Many congregations feel the lack of full sanctuaries due to  people being out on summer vacations. It can be a long season indeed, and let's face it, Ordinary Time isn't a very exciting name either. But rather than slouch in a summer slump, I invite you to embrace a new awareness of the ordinary.

Ordinary things are what make the church great. Warm smiles, concerned hugs, conversations of the week's events. They are all beautiful expressions of grace. And the world is full of beautiful "ordinary" moments, if you stop to see them. Jesus asks us to "consider the lilies of the field" and "the birds of the air" as reminders of God's beautiful creation and the extent of God's provisional grace. 

As a painter, I enjoy finding the beauty in ordinary things. This painting is a larger take on an abstract I painted a while ago. The painting is based on reflections in a water puddle in a school parking lot after a heavy spring rain. It doesn't get any more ordinary than that. But looking at the reflections in such a simple thing, there is a color palette of infinite beauty and grace. 

So take some time to enjoy the ordinary in you life—and be thankful.

Saturday, August 1, 2015

God in the Storm

9"x12" Oil on Gessoed Panel
with Palette Knife

Psalm 29

The Voice of God in a Great Storm

A Psalm of David.

Ascribe to the Lord, O heavenly beings,
    ascribe to the Lord glory and strength.
Ascribe to the Lord the glory of his name;
    worship the Lord in holy splendor.
The voice of the Lord is over the waters;
    the God of glory thunders,
    the Lord, over mighty waters.
The voice of the Lord is powerful;
    the voice of the Lord is full of majesty.
The voice of the Lord breaks the cedars;
    the Lord breaks the cedars of Lebanon.
He makes Lebanon skip like a calf,
    and Sirion like a young wild ox.
The voice of the Lord flashes forth flames of fire.
The voice of the Lord shakes the wilderness;
    the Lord shakes the wilderness of Kadesh.
The voice of the Lord causes the oaks to whirl,
    and strips the forest bare;
    and in his temple all say, “Glory!”
10 The Lord sits enthroned over the flood;
    the Lord sits enthroned as king forever.
11 May the Lord give strength to his people!
    May the Lord bless his people with peace!