Monday, April 11, 2011

For God So Loved...

For God so loved the world
that he gave his one and only Son,
that whoever believes in him
shall not perish but have eternal life.
John 3:16

The making of this banner, 4' X 7':

The last series of banners I have worked on for our church deals with Christ's passion, death, and resurrection. I researched symbols and ideas, chose colors and textures of fabrics, drew out designs, and most importantly, prayed for inspiration. I would like to share the story of this particular banner as it progressed past what I had in mind for it to be 'finished.'

I began with the concept of a slanted cross to signify the position of Jesus, beaten and bleeding, carrying it to Golgotha. I added the tan earth, and a bright blue stripe above it (in my mind to add a color punch to divide the two bland colors of earth and light blue sky.) I used a flannel-backed gold foil tablecloth I found at a garage sale to make the letters and nails.

As the banner progressed I contemplated adding drops of blood falling from the areas of nailed flesh. Well, that would not be pretty, I thought. I fought against it as being too gruesome, but "IT WAS!, HE WAS BEATEN NEARLY TO DEATH BEFORE CARRYING HIS OWN CROSS TO DIE FOR YOU!" was what I heard in the spirit. "IT WASN'T PRETTY, BUT IT WAS BEAUTIFUL!"So be it; the drops of blood needed to be there to tell the whole story.

As I progressed to the crown of thorns I was going to draw it on in brown or grey paint to show the mundane vines and thorns. The soldiers had made the crown to mock him as 'king of the Jews,' and struck him in the face. The truth, however, is that Jesus is KING OF EVERYTHING, and this cross needed to be gold on this banner to signify his true identity.

As I moved the banner in my impatience, some of the still wet liner paint got onto a portion of the sky. Now I had a dilemma of how to fix the booboo! I went back to bed and asked God to give me inspiration as I slept. When I got back to work on the banner I added more earth above the blue strip. Then it struck me what 'the rest of the story' was as I stepped back to look at the whole picture: the blue strip became the symbol of the earth shaking and rocks splitting as Jesus gave up his spirit. The curtain of the temple was torn in two from top to bottom.

This tearing of the curtain is Christ's making it possible for believers to go directly into God's presence. I also then saw the bright blue color as the symbol of Christ being the bridge over the river; and he, himself, being the river of life; conquering death through his work on the cross.

Making this banner blessed me so much. I got to experience God's rescue as I messed up the process, and let him show me the path of fixing and finishing it to tell the story with some added levels of understanding I did not have when the process began.

For God so loved the world...AMAZING LOVE!


1 comment:

Mona said...

Connie, it's just as amazing as you described this morning! It would have been lovely without the "mistake" (and we both know God doesn't make any!!), but it's so much more meaningful after your fix. This banner is going to truly grace your church this resurrection season. Well done!!