“Grace of a new day” – the artist interviews Melody McSparran, a long-time student and teacher of the Bible.
Rosemary: This painting is called “Grace”, and I was so moved in our Genesis bible study when you were talking about the topic of grace.
Melody: I think what I said was the act of creation itself was an act of grace because God did not have to create, He chose to. He wanted to share Himself with us. And so when I look at this painting, I do think of creation. God separated the land from the sea, and the sky from the water. It was this act of separating and organizing don’t I see that in your painting; this separation is so obvious between the sky and the sea, so it really speaks creation to me. I’m wondering is it the East coast or the West coast, as to whether sunrise or sunset.
Rosemary: In a lot of my paintings, I realize it could be either; the viewer doesn’t necessarily know. This is the East coast.
Melody: Ok so sunrise.
Rosemary: I love going out in the sunrise and trying to capture that lighting.
Melody: You feel that hope of a new day. What will today bring? And that’s, I think in and of itself, a grace. The Scripture says His mercies are new every morning. So here’s a new day and that’s a grace.
And it’s a peaceful scene. Sometimes water can be angry and the ocean can be a turbulent place. But it’s not in this. It’s a peaceful scene of grace. And I’m reminded, to me, one of the most soothing sounds is that – the sound of the surf – the repetition to me that’s a calm, soothing balm. So I see that and feel that as I’m looking at your painting.
I don’t know if that’s what you were thinking when you named it “Grace”, but I feel that looking at your painting.
Rosemary: I sensed a never-ending-ness about it, and that is God because He is eternal and He is always in our life, and the ebb and flow is the question of whether we allow that grace to come in. But it’s always there.
Melody: Constancy, lovely. I’m looking at the break in the waves and that constancy, that repetitive motion – I guess “presence” would be an idea that comes to mind there. Presence. I feel like we’re standing on the land looking out at the sea, and that’s a grace too, that it’s near by, but I’m not engulfed in it, because it can be terrifying. The water, the deep, could be a terrifying place. But here, we’re in a place of safety and security and yet it brings to us that reminder of constancy, of presence, that newness of creation.
Rosemary: I love what you said because one of my absolute favorite places to be, which may hold true for you too, is water’s edge. You are in a safe place, but you get to take it all in and appreciate it.
Melody: Exactly. I wouldn’t feel as calm and soothed perhaps if I were in a rowboat out there; it would be a very different feeling. But because of where we are, we’re anchored, we’re secure – that we get to appreciate the vastness of creation.
Another thing that comes to mind, Rosemary, is one thing Pastor Tom Nelson said that has stuck with me, and I’ll probably say it sometime during our Genesis bible study, is ‘when you know God, you can never know Him fully, but you can know Him truly’. And it is like you look at this and the ocean is so vast, and we know there are creatures yet undiscovered, there’s depths unplumbed, and yet there’s aspects of it we can know ‘truly’. And so this is a trueness, only a small little glimpse, so it kind of is a metaphor for how we know God too.
Melody: Well, that’s Pastor Tom Nelson – I’ll credit him with this. That has stuck with me and has for a long time cause we can’t know everything, but He’s given us things we can know. And we can hold on and say that is true. It’s like this little window into what can be known.
Pictured above: “Grace” in Framed Giclee Limited Edition. Also available in Deluxe Print and Giclee Wraps at www.BegleyArt.com