8" X 8" Oil on Linen panel
I told him no at first ……even though that handsome irresistible grin seemed to be choosing me. I had an artistic idea in my mind, and well, he just didn’t meet my expectations. It would have been easier to just say yes. But no, I knew best ....... really wasn't an option.
Frustrated, I poured over my choices again and again. I kept asking Lyn, his “mom”, to send more pictures, hoping I’d see just what I wanted! As a last resort, I enlisted the help of my artist friend, Colleen, and my teacher, Chris. They pointed out some things that made me take a step back and re-think the whole situation.
It was humbling, but I realized I had been looking for the wrong thing – a serious, traditional regal pose - a picture of perfection with all things right – the icon of "Golden Retriever-ville." So, now with an open mind, I began to study all the views, to take time to really see him. The more I studied him, the more my heart began to move. This loveable big guy was inviting me on an adventure - to leave my worries behind …. to play like a child – to run free, to play catch and Frisbee, to roll in a pile of fall leaves.... to laugh til I cried, and to love til it hurt! So, I gave him a big imaginary hug and I said YES!! Meet Mort.
After his mom told me stories about him, I realized his personality matched what I was seeing and knew it was the story my painting was to tell. Being the good-looking hunk that he was, you may not be surprised to learn that Mort loved to be told how handsome he was! He had a bit of a sinful streak in him tho – he loved to steal. Yeah, the socks right off your feet. Of course he thought the ensuing chase was the best – so fun!!! And he slept in the bathtub.......what??
I can’t believe I took so long to choose this reference photo. I think the problem began with the fact that my mind was closed to anything other than what I had created in it – I was literally BLIND to my options. That is, until someone helped me see things differently.
You know, some decisions need to be made with our head; others with our heart. And then there are those decisions that we may initially make with our heads….. that then, in turn, truly change our hearts and lives.
Many in Jesus’ day did not acknowledge Him as the answer to the prophesied Savior – a King. And so they missed out – they overlooked Him because He wasn’t the picture they had in their minds. Like many of us today, maybe you know about Him but often look right past him in a world of need, sin, and destruction – all in searching for answers that you imagine. Maybe if we’d listen to that friend that is reaching out, take a closer look and study who He really is, BE WITH HIM, our hearts would recognize His invitation and accept it – to love and receive love, to forgive and receive forgiveness, to live in freedom! Just say YES!!!
"...yet you refuse to come to me that you may have life..."
John 5:40 (ESV)