a vision of Lent

“Contrary to what might be expected,
I look back on experiences that at the time seemed especially desolating and painful,
with particular satisfaction.
Indeed, I can say with complete truthfulness that everything I have learned in
my seventy-five years in this world,
everything that has truly enhanced and enlightened my existence,
has been through affliction and not through happiness, whether pursued or attained…
This, of course, is what the Cross signifies.
And it is the Cross, more than anything else,
that has called me inexorably to Christ.”

Malcolm Muggeridge

(Bonaventure Cemetery /Savannah, Ga / Julie Cook 2016)

giving up
doing without

But what is it about this Lent…this entering into the desert…
this time of isolation and self denial….
What brings us here?
Why are we here at this crossroads…
Where is it that we are now bound…
What will be the point of this…
and intent of focus…

As they were looking on, so we too gaze on his wounds as he hangs.
We see his blood as he dies.
We see the price offered by the redeemer, touch the scars of his resurrection.
He bows his head, as if to kiss you. His heart is made bare open, as it were,
in love to you. His arms are extended that he may embrace you.
His whole body is displayed for your redemption.
Ponder how great these things are. Let all this be rightly weighed in your mind:
as he was once fixed to the cross in every part of his body for you,
so he may now be fixed in every part of your soul.

St. Augustine

(detail/ painting by Julie Cook)

17 comments on “a vision of Lent

  1. atimetoshare.me says:

    What an awesome work of art ! Ow I know two master artists. Great words too❤️

  2. Melissa Presser (still Esquire) says:

    Beyond moving, Thanks Julie

  3. Lynda says:

    Beautiful painting Julie! Your heart and soul have been integrated into this work of art. Blessings on your Lenten journey. May we all grow deeper in our relationship with our Lord.

    • thank Lynda–you’ve probably seen the whole thing before—-and it’s based off of the Gruwald Isenheim altarpiece in Colmar, France—-my most favorite depiction of the crucifixion…because it is vivid, hard to look at and real…no sugar coating about it…
      I pray I do get through Lent in one piece—as this is not a typical Lenten journey—what with the current level of crisises abounding with Dad, Gloria, the caregivers…you name it…

  4. Sarah says:

    Powerful painting Julie. I’m guessing from your answer to one of the comments that you might not have finished it. Do you think you will ever go back to it?
    I lit a candle for you and your dad today. (I hope you know that, even though I’m quiet, it doesn’t mean I’ve forgotten you.) ❤

    • Sarah that means the world to me!
      I’ll send you a picture of where it was when I left school– it’a big– about the size of a large sheet of watercolor paper 30″x 40″– 3 pieces– to be eventually a three pancaked triptych– I had wanted to eventually donate to an Abbey out in Oklahoma– clear creek abbey– but life got in the way– I hope to one day finish it

      • Sarah says:

        Well, I hope you get the chance to finish it. It would be a shame for the abbey to miss out. I look forward to seeing the work-in-progress.

    • Sarah, Don asked to see the full image so here is a link to the post I wrote about 3 years ago discussing the piecehttps://cookiecrumbstoliveby.wordpress.com/2013/03/28/my-secret-german-love/

  5. Julie, I love your picture of the crucifiction, Is it possible to get a copy of the complete picture?

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