Library News – December

I was trying to paint a picture for a meditation – a devotional picture – and I found I couldn’t do it.

I’m a moderate artist. I can paint a landscape, I can illustrate a story, I can draw birthday cards with mermaids or monsters to amuse my grandchildren. But a devotional picture has to do more than that. It has to show you the landscape of the soul. It has to take you right through the story to the truths beneath. It should be, says one writer, “a window for our earthly eyes through which we can see the Kingdom of Heaven.” I can’t do that.

But we do have some books in the Library that can. We have two of Mary Fleeson’s books, “Life Journey”, and “A Life in Christ”. Her pictures have a flavour of the Celtic Christianity that flourished on the Holy Island, Lindisfarne, where she lives, and they have a depth and a richness of imagery that underpin the meditations and prayers she has written with them. Not all of them will speak to you. You have to look carefully, and study the interwoven details for them to guide you through. But guide you they can.

Then we have, very differently, some books on icons; Linda Proud’s “Icons, a Sacred Art” and Tradigo’s “Icons and Saints of the Eastern Orthodox Church”. Icons are meant as a focus for stillness; their stylised figures and traditional symbols lead us from the changeable human world into the eternal realities of God’s Kingdom.

Pray through your eyes. Look at these pictures and learn of God. And at Christmastime see in the familiar crib the glory of the Incarnation.


Rosemary Smith

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