Whatever you feel about social media, God has used Facebook to connect me with a new friend, Therese Kay, and her amazing new book, Meeting God through Art: Visio Divina. First, Therese posted a funny meme about Type-A personalities walking the labyrinth, and I noticed it came from the Church Pension Group, an Episcopal organization. So, I asked her, “Are you an Episcopalian, by any chance?” The answer came back, “Yes,” and I realized that she and I are on parallel spiritual paths.
Like me a former teacher, she is an artist and writer interested in labyrinths, contemplative prayer, mandalas, and hearing God’s voice through art. She has an earlier book available on Amazon called Messages from God: an Illuminated Devotional, a beautiful glossy hardback book with Therese’s photography throughout. She co-wrote this gorgeous book with Kathleen Schwab. It has an accompanying workbook, since you would not want to write in the hardback.
I, however, was most interested in the Visio Divina book, which officially launches on August 15 at this link: https://www.amazon.com/Meeting-God-through-Art-Metropolitan/dp/1074041003/ref=sr_1_1?keywords=Therese+Kay&qid=1565132004&s=books&sr=1-1 Therese would be thrilled if any of my blog followers concerted their efforts to order it on launch day and give her a big spike in sales. Just a suggestion.
When the book arrived, I immediately went into my prayer room, stilled myself, and opened the book at random to the painting titled “Christ Blessing the Children.” Therese asks us to stare for a full minute at the detail that attracts our eye first, then to study the painting all over. Ever since taking art appreciation in college, I have loved to study detailed paintings. I look at symbolism, color, gesture, and light. Just like poetry and literature, art reveals deeper meanings through patterns of motifs, juxtaposition of images, contrast, and harmony. Therese and I agree that God, the original Creator, speaks through all human creators, whether they call themselves believers or not.
The questions Therese poses get right to the heart of the message: Where do you see yourself in the painting? Where is God in the painting? What is missing or incomplete in the painting? I found writing the answers to these queries effortless and powerful. They cut right through my defenses with sharp truth. Wow! This stuff works for me!
Next week, I will share some more about my epiphanies using Meeting God through Art: Visio Divina. It’s been a joyful revelation to me. Thanks for reading!