Take a close look at this brilliant piece of art.
Consider carefully what you’re seeing…
Okay, what does it say?
Here’s what President Obama’s former pastor, Jeremiah Wright (I know, I know) interpreted from it in a sermon preached 20 years ago:
“with her clothes in rags, her body scarred and bruised and bleeding, her harp all but destroyed and with only one string left, she had the audacity to make music and praise God … To take the one string you have left and to have the audacity to hope … that’s the real word God will have us hear from this passage and from [George Fredrick] Watt’s painting.”
That’s good, right? No matter who lectured on it. If it helps, pretend it was somebody else. 😁
There something you need to know about this interpretive-rich work of art. Actually, there’s two things. First, Mr. Watts labeled his painting simply (but pointedly) “Hope”, and, second, his work came on the heels of the tragic passing of his adopted daughter, Blanche.
I so get it, considering such a trial is all too painfully familiar.
Here’s what Watts offered with regard to his ironic painting:
“Hope need not mean expectancy. It suggests here rather the music which can come from the remaining chord”
My wife and I are holding a one-stringed harp. Our 31 years together have known a compilation of events that, each one by itself, would lead to a weakened marriage, or worse. What marriages survive the death of a child? Plus life-threatening sicknesses, ministry heartaches, a heart-wrenching adolescent whose prodigal life broke our hearts over and over again?
And Hope is a Person.
Take heart, bedraggled, downcast, waiting-for-breakthrough pilgrim. Your harp still has one string left…and always will.
The exiles of Israel were so broken over their captivity the Psalmist laments they hung their harps on the weeping willow trees. They opined they couldn’t play the songs of Zion in a strange land.
Well that’s unfortunate.
I say, how can you NOT sing the songs of Zion in a foreign land? Don’t the earth-dwellers need to here the harmonies of heaven? Is that not why we’re here?
So, play your string.
In the comment box, paint a ‘picture’ of your situation and how God is giving you grace to hope?
Or just offer a comment!