"Green Cathedral," (St. Dunstan-in-the-East, London), original ink drawing and watercolor painting, 9 x 12.
Isaiah 42:9-10 Behold, the former things are come to pass, and new things do I declare: before they spring forth I tell you of them.
Sing unto the Lord a new song, and his praise from the end of the earth...
Psalm 51:10 Create in me a clean heart, O God; and renew a right spirit within me.
2 Corinthians 5:17 Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.
Romans 9:6 "...We should serve in newness of spirit, and not in the oldness of the letter."
Ezekiel 36:26 A new heart also will I give you, and a new spirit will I put within you: and I will take away the stony heart... and I will give you an heart of flesh.
Romans 6:4 even so we also should walk in newness of life.
I chose this for the last image of advent as we prepare to move into the new year. St. Dunstan is an old church, mentioned in Charles Dickens' A Christmas Carol, as a tower looking down hauntingly at Scrooge. And yet, St. Dunstan is something completely new now -- after having been partially destroyed by bombs during the blitz of World War II, its empty shell has now become a beautiful and inviting garden, with vines and leaves growing up and through the remains of the structure, lovingly tended. There are benches for those who choose to sit and reflect. It has progressed from an ominous, looming structure to a shell of its former self, to a symbol of serenity and peace. May we all undergo a similar transformation in our own lives. The painting is a vignette, fading out around the edges to allude to a continuation, an ongoing progression, eternity.
I love that Christ came as an infant -- a helpless newborn -- to symbolize that His mission (and one of his greatest gifts to the world) was to create an opportunity for newness for all of us, an opportunity to become new creatures, with clean hearts and spirits renewed, serving in new ways, and ultimately walking a new life. Let's all carry that beautiful sense of newness with us into the coming year.
I am an artist and art instructor working in water media. Just knowing I can watch colors run together makes it worth getting out of bed every morning! Helping students capture the same excitement is equally rewarding.