© 2018 by Thurber Studios LLC

Learn the story behind this painting!

The Word and Two Sparrows

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  • Learn the story behind this painting:

     

    Yes, it's supposed to be sideways.

    This painting is an outpouring of praise for the Creator of all things, big and small. In a time where I needed a perspective change, I was asking God, just as Job did, “why am I going through this?” God’s reply to me was “trust me.” I questioned myself, “why am I so afraid to trust God?” and I explored this theme through “The Word and two sparrows.” The look on my face is one of fearfulness, but awe- a suspension in time where I am on the verge of a crossroads. Do I trust the Creator of my Soul, or do I trust my own judgement? The answer, as God answered Job, was not a clear one in the sense of the word, but a realization- how could I NOT trust Him? All of Creation, including myself is portrayed in this painting where I compare myself to a sparrow. Indeed, that’s all I’m worthy of being compared to. I have chosen nothing but darkness on my own. But lucky for me, the Creator, whose presence is represented in one way the hand on the right, and in the moon and stars on the left, has chosen and named me above all creation. The fact that He cares for us humans is incomprehensible to us who are searching for the “whys” of life. Often we aren’t meant to understand the things of God, but I thank Him for the things He has revealed to me.

     

    I chose to portray myself in a sideways orientation in order to show the way God is changing my perspective. The change is also represented in the comparison of my darkness, and His light penetrating through it. God is showing me that there is a whole new reality to be found in Him, one greater, and deeper, than the longing reality the soul knew at the beginning of the hymn. I wrote this hymn from Bible verses, stringing together a story and a dialogue between myself and God, in order to show myself (and the viewer) just why I can trust Him with my eternal salvation. 

     

    Psalm 139 inspired most of the hymn, simply because it affirmed to me that from birth, God knew me and had a plan for me (“you knit me together in my Mother’s womb”). Though I have corrupted His creation through the malady of my sin, the Father who made me in my Mother’s womb is willing to make me new again and again (I showed this with the hand painting the leaf (growth, renewal) onto my face). The Creator did not stop creating after Genesis chapter one. I believe that He is the constant Creator, and even after we are born He is shaping and renewing us as we allow Him to be Lord and Creator of our lives. I create too- on a canvas- and though my art is but a shadow of the Greatest Artist, I seek to honor God with my creations, and honor God by living my life as His creation. There is no need for worry. Though I may feel overwhelmed by darkness, “even the darkness will not be dark to” Him who has called me into the light, into the faith and fellowship in a constant celebration of God’s majesty and beautiful work. I pray that He will continue to shape and mould me into the creation that He had planned in the splendor of His original intent. 

     

    Text reads:

     

    Search me, O God, and know my heart; 

    test me and know my anxious thoughts. 

    For  Where can I flee from your presence? 

    If I say, "Surely the darkness will hide me 

    and the light become night around me," 

    even the darkness will not be dark to you; 

    the night will shine like the day, 

    for you wrap yourself in light as with a garment; 

    You stretch out the heavens like a tent 

    The heavens declare your glory; 

    the skies proclaim the work of your hands. 

    the morning stars sing together 

    and all the angels shout for joy,

    their voice goes out into all the earth, 

    And You ask me, "Where were you when I laid the earth's foundation? 

    But ask the animals, and they will teach you, 

    or the birds of the air, and they will tell you; 

    or speak to the earth, and it will teach you, 

     or let the fish of the sea inform you. 

     Which of all these does not recognize the hand of the Lord?” 

     For In your hand is the life of every creature 

    and the breath of all mankind.

    How many are your works! the earth is full of your creatures. 

    In your wisdom you made them all; 

    And yet I am so foolish and unwise, 

    Is he not my Father, my Creator, 

    who made me and formed me? 

    But now says my Lord,

    “When you pass through the waters, they shall not overwhelm you;
    when you walk through fire you shall not be burned or consumed
    For I will be with you.  

    “I, the Lord your God, hold your right hand;

    I say to you, ‘Fear not,

    I am the one who helps you.

    Fear not, for I have redeemed you;
    I have called you by name, and you are mine.’ 

    “Are not two little sparrows sold for a penny? 

    not one of them will fall to the ground apart from the Father. 

    Fear not, therefore; you are of more value than many sparrows.

    I even know the number of hairs on your head.”

    For you, my Lord, you created my inmost being; 

    you knit me together in my mother's womb. 

     I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made

    Your works are wonderful.

     

    (Deteronomy 32:6; Job 12:7-10; Job 38:1-7: Psalm 19:1,4a; Psalm 139:7; 11-13, 14, 23; Psalm 104 :1-2, 4, 24; Isaiah 43:1-2, 10, 13; Matthew 10:29-31  )

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