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Logos2Go

Daily thoughts on aesthetics and theology, and the entire world in between.

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Brushstrokes for the moment


Feb 13, 2009







Painting this tree gave me a renewed respect for the authority of brushstrokes. I am a very occasional painter, so I felt insecure in applying paint to canvas. How do I hold the brush? How much paint to use? Does the picture taking shape before me look anything like the image I see within me?

As a painting emerges on canvas, it is either a friend that you know, or a stranger you must get used to. If it is the latter, painting may not be a pleasant activity, because you come to realize that the stranger is you.

In my case, many dabs and strokes had to be repeated. And I see the unevenness of the product. Friends generally say “wow!” And that is a pleasant thing. But in the quiet of my heart, my response to my painting is “hmm.”

My last 3 classroom experiences – all three of them this week -- have been unsatisfying. The clumsiness with which I handled the contents is like the clumsiness I felt in applying the paint. In my heart of hearts, I know I am still an occasional teacher, just like I am an occasional painter. The “wows” of others can lead one astray, and in teaching there are many disguises one can wear to give the illusion of “wow.” All those disguises are strangers. The first challenge in the classroom is that you must come to know yourself: who you are, what your limitations are, what you can truly bring that is living and true. Only after all of that can there be any hope of wielding a confident brushstroke.

The Scriptures say that we are fearfully and wonderfully made. The brushstrokes of God, both in us and around us, are filled with authority. So much so, they are like nature; we can say that the brushstrokes of God all come naturally. (I hope God is smiling). And so this morning, as I face the angst once again of applying the brushstrokes to lesson plans, and to all the moments of life up ahead, my prayer is, “Make me more like you.”


1 comments:

David Wang February 14, 2009 at 12:20 PM  
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