2020-03-11 - Big Picture
For about a week, I’ve been working on a pen and ink rendering from an intriguing photo I found. I normally use my own photos, but some subjects are out of my geographical vicinity. One of the methods to accurately depicting the proportions and specific dimensions of any object is looking at the photo image from different angles, so the focus, while interpreting to lines on the paper, is on the shapes rather than how our brain identifies those shapes - thus allowing the creative brain to work with the analytical one rather than contrary to one another. I was taught ‘upside down drawing’ in my college drawing courses, but I have found that turning the images in several directions can add further clarity. Persisting beyond an hour with drawing leads to compromised clarity, so I take breaks. I stand the drawing and the source of its point of conception in view of where I am sitting, which allows me to regain perspective seeing the big picture. As I look at it from a distance, it is easier to determine which aspects are working well, which just need details added or adjusted, and which are not working. It allows me to be true to my subject of inspiration.
Spiritual matters can also benefit from a big picture view. When doing the undertaking we are called to, however, we can get so focused on it that we may miss a chance for a blessing.
“Still another said, “I will follow you, Lord; but first let me go back and say goodbye to my family.” Jesus replied, “No one who puts a hand to the plow and looks back is fit for service in the kingdom of God.” (Luke 9:61-62 NIV)
True, we are not to look back to the place we were before beginning service to our Savior-but there are times we need to go back in prayer and study, to see if there’s anything else we should move toward in like-minded obedience. Sometimes we add things to our service ‘plate,’ and other times we move away from one thing toward another. Having been guilty of not pausing to make sure my focus was where it should be, I have been let down spiritually as well as artistically.
“Keep back thy servant also from presumptuous sins; let them not have dominion over me: then shall I be upright, and I shall be innocent from the great transgression. Let the words of my mouth, and the meditation of my heart, be acceptable in thy sight, O Lord, my strength, and my redeemer.” (Psalm 19:13-14 KJV)
With an art project, the disappointment is limited to loss of time re-rendering an area of the work and at worst starting over. In a spiritual matter, unsatisfying results can lead to causing someone else to stumble, whether they already have spiritual perspective or not. But whether they felt a connection to our maker or did not, the idea of destroying any possibility by my own behaving improperly is far more devastating to me than some extra work on an artistic translation of creation. Because if I am a fraud, then what I claim I do creatively with his power will be for naught. In order to lead others to our Father, rather than driving them away, we need to rely on God to give us the big picture of how he wants us to proceed.. It is then that we will be rewarded with the insight needed to finish the piece-our part of His plan.
“Now to you who believe, this stone is precious. But to those who do not believe, “The stone the builders rejected has become the cornerstone,” and, “A stone that causes people to stumble and a rock that makes them fall.” They stumble because they disobey the message-which is also what they were destined for. But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, God&qrquo;s special possession, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light.” (I Peter 2:7-9 NIV)
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All verses are from the New American Standard Version (NASB) unless otherwise noted.