When I started to paint this scene, I wanted to depict both the beauty of winter as well as its harsh effects on nature. I liked this image because I believe it’s a great visual metaphor for the “winter’s” of our own lives --when God seems silent and we feel vulnerable in the face of our harsh circumstances.
But regardless of how we “feel”, the reality is that God is always near to us, praying for us, and loving us through those wintery valleys that all of us face throughout our lives. He tells us in the Bible time and again to have faith in the face of adversity -- that He is on our side...working on our behalf to bless us and lead us into places of victory, not defeat! I believe that God transforms our hearts most effectively during those harsh, faith-stretching seasons. Although they are NEVER fun experiences, it seems that when we make it through to the other side of it, we see that God was there next to us the whole time, faithfully loving us into a deeper level of knowing Him -- and knowing that we are safe in His love.
“Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge Him, and He will make your paths straight.” – Proverbs 3:5-6
“Faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see.” – Hebrews 11:1
“So let’s not get tired of doing what is good. At just the right time we will reap a harvest of blessing if we don’t give up.” – Galatians 6:9-10 (NLT)
December 17th, 2012
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