9×12 Oil

Today was a day I got out early to paint en plein air! (For all my South GA friends, that means “outside”).  I had already scoped out some settings, thinking of the angle of the morning sun.  I had already marked some places off my list, thinking of the solitude of painting and personal safety issues.  So this morning,  I got in my little car and drove around the neighborhood, looking for vistas on the golf course.  After exploring a few,  it always came back around to the issue of flying golf balls.  Did I really want to put myself through that risk?  Not to be defeated, I drove back home, hiked around my backyard and just could not find anything that caught my eye.  As I rounded the corner of my home, the sunlight on the front porch seemed to say, “Here I am.  Welcome home!  Why not just set up right here in the safety and shelter of your own front door?”  It felt good to be home.

Now, I’ve said before that God speaks to me when I paint.  He seems to use the metaphors of my subject matter.  That front porch looked so sheltered and comfortable, nestled against the strong trees and surrounded by firm ground.  And, the best part was I could stand under some shade trees while I painted. (Even so, my glasses were fogging up in the GA humidity!  I’m trying to paint outside for this 30 day challenge and the weather is the biggest obstacle.)

But, as I painted, I thought about Shelter and how important it is for all to have.    I thought about what Shelter looks like to many different people.   I thought about my own sheltered life:  parents who did their best to shelter me from grownup problems,  a lifestyle of ease and provision, a husband who would go to combat for me, and a God who always, somehow, makes all things work together for good.  I’ve been sheltered.  Not in the sense that I’m not aware of all that is unjust, and sad, and evil about this world.  Not that I haven’t had disappointments and difficult times.  But, I’ve been sheltered and fed and loved.  And for that I am grateful and content.  May generosity grow from gratefulness!

This is Day 27!  Only three more days of this 30 Day Challenge!

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