Tuesday, June 09, 2009

on hope and painting

It's been awhile...so I'll try to capture a bit of what's been on my mind these days. I haven't been in the writing rhythm lately, so it may be a little muddled and incoherent. Maybe, just maybe, I'll get better at sitting down to write one of these days...

Do you ever just get to that point where there's so much going on that you're just overwhelmed and don't know where to begin? That's a little bit of where I'm at, so I'm choosing to just focus in on one thing I've been thinking about lately: hope.

I've found suddenly that I have an obsession with hope. (That's not such a bad thing, right?) It may have all started with a greeting card. About 2 years ago, a friend lost his grandpa, and I went to buy a sympathy card to send. I'm one of those people who can spend hours in the Hallmark store or in the greeting card aisles at the store, laughing out loud or tearing up at the "perfect" cards. I was trying to choose just the right sympathy card, because if you don't already know this--those are the type of cards where the words really do matter. You know, birthday cards or wedding cards can simply say "Happy birthday" or "Congratulations" and be sufficient, but a sympathy card has to be chosen specifically for each situation. Having lost my dad about 6 months prior, I was still a little sensitive to finding a card with just the right words. And then I found one that has stuck in my mind ever since. Based on I Thessalonians 4, it said on the inside:

"Thankful that we do not grieve as those who have no hope."

For some reason, it took that greeting card to remind me of that verse, and even more, the idea that we have hope. Grieving is a much different process when you know the one you loved and lost is in heaven. I've said it before that I'm not sure how others grieve those who did not know Jesus in their lives on earth. Hope is what brings forth joy even in times of tragedy.

Since then, the word 'hope' has been one of my favorite words.

And recently, I found this painting on Etsy.com that I just loved immediately. I've been on a streak of painting some canvases to hang in my living room based on cute things or other pictures I find on Etsy, so I've become fairly decent at re-creating them myself. I wouldn't ever claim the artwork as my own, since I basically copied the ideas from someone else's creativity. So thank you, artists who have contributed on Etsy, for inspiring me to be more creative. (The best part? I enjoy it, and if I mess up, I get to keep on trying. And if I don't like it in a month, I'll just paint over it again!)

So, I re-created the 'hope' painting twice--in 2 color schemes: one is blue and red, and the other is yellow, orange, and green with letters in white. I'm not crazy about the colors as of now, so I may be changing it. It's sitting on a shelf in my living room until I decide how I feel about it. (I may try to post pics soon...)

Anyhow, 'hope' has been one of the things on my mind, so I spent some time the other night going through scripture and was reminded of this verse in Lamentations that I just love:

"I well remember them, and my soul is downcast within me.
Yet this I call to mind and therefore I have hope:
Because of the Lord's great love, we are not consumed,
for His compassions never fail."

The Lord's great love? His unfailing compassion? His Son? We have no better reason to have hope than this.

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