Do you hunger for more of God? More of the Word? More of His Presence?
I painted this piece at the graduation weekend and worship celebration in Indiana a couple weeks ago. It was an awesome way to end a two year study (and for me, painting) through every 66 books of the Bible. It was quite a journey to say the least!
(If you haven't checked out the paintings, you can click the link to see them here.)
I knew I would be painting live in the worship night during this celebration weekend of reviveSCHOOL, as always, I prayed about a message God wanted me to paint for that night. As I spent some time with the Lord praying, I heard Him say to me, "do you hunger for more?" I had an idea where He was going with this...
After completing a 2 year, in depth study and marathon of painting through the Bible, do I hunger for more or say great job and leave it in the past? Do I hunger for more of Him? To go deeper into the Word... God spoke to my heart concerning where I was at in finishing an accomplishment such as painting through the Bible, but is that the end? Do we stop there and say, well done! You did it! And check off an accomplishment box that I completed reading through the Bible and stop there.
No... God was asking me, "do you hunger for more?" It's a choice and a response. It should never stop at a timeline or finish line in the natural. He was showing me this is just the beginning!
I saw this painting unfold in my mind as I sat with Him. A path in a canopy of green trees, lite with sunlight peeking through the branches, drawing me to walk towards the light on a narrow path. A single butterfly fluttering in the foreground almost as if saying, follow me. I saw the Bible opened laying on a linen cloth, bread broken and of course, a flower! (If you heard about my story painting the Bible, you will understand why I had to have a flower in there.) A red anemone laying in front of the scene. I started to unpack what the vision represented...
The open Word of God is alive and active, it leads us on a path of knowing Him, Jesus Christ. Jesus is in all the Bible, everything points to Him. He is the light, the way the truth and the life, resurrection power, He is the bread of life, the source of our spiritual nourishment, the aroma of sacrifice. We must eat on the bread of life, having an intimate relationship with Him, He welcomes all to the table to dine. The flower represents the blood that was shed for all humanity on the Cross in order to have salvation and eternal life. The butterfly is our life transformed through Him, now and in eternity! And the linen represents, "Jesus is alive!" His body left the tomb.
When we know Jesus, we hear His voice. He guides and directs our steps down the narrow path of our destiny. He has a plan for each and every person to fulfill while on earth. We must get to know Him, so we can discern His voice from that of others that lead us astray. And in order to know Jesus, we must read His Word and spend time with Him in His presence.
"Whether you turn to the right or to the left, your ears will hear a voice behind you, saying, “This is the way; walk in it.” (Isaiah 30:21)
"Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me." (John 14:6)
"Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life. The one who believes in me will live, even though they die;" (John 11:25)
"Then Jesus declared, “I am the bread of life. Whoever comes to me will never go hungry, and whoever believes in me will never be thirsty. 36 But as I told you, you have seen me and still you do not believe. 37 All those the Father gives me will come to me, and whoever comes to me I will never drive away. 38 For I have come down from heaven not to do my will but to do the will of him who sent me. 39 And this is the will of him who sent me, that I shall lose none of all those he has given me, but raise them up at the last day. 40 For my Father’s will is that everyone who looks to the Son and believes in him shall have eternal life, and I will raise them up at the last day.” (John 6: 35-40)
"But thanks be to God, who always leads us as captives in Christ’s triumphal procession and uses us to spread the aroma of the knowledge of him everywhere. 15 For we are to God the pleasing aroma of Christ among those who are being saved and those who are perishing." (2 Corinthians 2:14-15)
Here's the crazy part, after I sketched out this painting, I talked to my cousin Kyle, who would be preaching that night as I painted, and dared asked him what his message was about. (I never used to do that while we were traveling and painting, it was more fun that way to see how the Lord was speaking to us individually that came together.) Well... I wasn't surprised when I heard what he was thinking, it fit perfectly and added more confirmation to this painting! He said his main message was about the Road to Emmaus, Luke 24:13-35. After reading the passages in the Bible, I saw the painting coming together and the Lord speaking more clearly about the message and why he was asking me if I hunger for more.
Another question entered my mind when I read the Scriptures: Do we SEE Him in our daily walk?
You really need to read the Scripture to get a bigger picture and more meaning to this painting:
On the Road to Emmaus
13 "Now that same day two of them were going to a village called Emmaus, about seven miles from Jerusalem. 14 They were talking with each other about everything that had happened. 15 As they talked and discussed these things with each other, Jesus himself came up and walked along with them; 16 but they were kept from recognizing him.
17 He asked them, “What are you discussing together as you walk along?”
They stood still, their faces downcast. 18 One of them, named Cleopas, asked him, “Are you the only one visiting Jerusalem who does not know the things that have happened there in these days?”
19 “What things?” he asked.
“About Jesus of Nazareth,” they replied. “He was a prophet, powerful in word and deed before God and all the people. 20 The chief priests and our rulers handed him over to be sentenced to death, and they crucified him; 21 but we had hoped that he was the one who was going to redeem Israel. And what is more, it is the third day since all this took place. 22 In addition, some of our women amazed us. They went to the tomb early this morning 23 but didn’t find his body. They came and told us that they had seen a vision of angels, who said he was alive. 24 Then some of our companions went to the tomb and found it just as the women had said, but they did not see Jesus.”
25 He said to them, “How foolish you are, and how slow to believe all that the prophets have spoken! 26 Did not the Messiah have to suffer these things and then enter his glory?” 27 And beginning with Moses and all the Prophets, he explained to them what was said in all the Scriptures concerning himself.
28 As they approached the village to which they were going, Jesus continued on as if he were going farther. 29 But they urged him strongly, “Stay with us, for it is nearly evening; the day is almost over.” So he went in to stay with them.
30 When he was at the table with them, he took bread, gave thanks, broke it and began to give it to them. 31 Then their eyes were opened and they recognized him, and he disappeared from their sight. 32 They asked each other, “Were not our hearts burning within us while he talked with us on the road and opened the Scriptures to us?”
33 They got up and returned at once to Jerusalem. There they found the Eleven and those with them, assembled together 34 and saying, “It is true! The Lord has risen and has appeared to Simon.” 35 Then the two told what had happened on the way, and how Jesus was recognized by them when he broke the bread." (Luke 24:13-35)
Do we recognize Jesus on the path beside us? Do we hunger for more of Him?
These two guys didn't even recognize Jesus until he broke the bread! I am going to leave it there for you to pray and seek the Lord for interpretation in your own life. I know what I felt Him speaking to me about... and I am going to use this as a reminder to ignite that fire and passion to hunger for MORE! To open my eyes. It's more than duties, it's about encountering the King of Glory, the living God, the Messiah, everyday on our journey. He's always there right beside us to lead the way. Sometimes it's a shift in perspective to see He's right there speaking to us. The bread of life.
I pray this painting speaks to your heart and blesses you. May you pause for a moment and reflect, ask God, "Do I hunger for more of you?" "Do I see you right beside me?" "What is your plan for my life, to be a light and carry out the calling you have anointed me for..."
May we all open our eyes to see the MORE!
PS. Please leave comments if you wish to share what you hear and see. I always love hearing from amazing people!
To purchase a print of this painting, click here.