Last month, we invited Blackhawk artists to create and share pieces in response to the prompt “Light of the World.”
When Jesus spoke again to the people, he said, “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.” (John 8:12)
We received some beautiful pieces, and over the next few weeks, we will be sharing a portion of them here on the blog. As we observe the season of Advent and Christmas together as a community, we hope that this series of art helps you to experience the presence of God and the significance of Jesus’ incarnation in a richer way.
Artist Statement: Sarah Bianchi
I wrote “Light” in the midst of a weary season after my eight-year-old was diagnosed with a chronic illness. My soul deeply grieved the longevity of this illness, my inability to take it away, and the reality that we do not always see healing on this side of heaven. I felt a deep weariness in my bones, a sadness I could not put into words. On a trip to Colorado, I spent some time lamenting, writing poetry to wring out the questions and anger and grief I was feeling. I would get up early in the morning while it was still dark, sit in the silence of the mountains, and notice my grief and fear. And yet every morning as the sun slowly crept over those mountains, I also noticed a subtle shift of lightness within me. Something in the very act of watching that sun come up whispered to my soul that there was still hope, that though I had no answers, I knew all would eventually be ok. To me, this is the very embodiment of Advent. Of sitting in our darkness and waiting, of noticing how scared and alone we feel, and of knowing, by the hopeful relief within, that the coming Light is what we have been waiting for.
To sit in utter darkness,
to settle there
despite the uncertainty,
to stay and wait,
means that when that first blur
of color floats above the horizon,
when the darkness finally begins to soften
into a subtle glow of dawn,
you will be the first to see it,
and will learn the secret
that we do not stay in shadow,
but are eventually always
given back the light.
Artist Statement: John Pollard
God, seeking to make right the wrongs in our relationship with him, sends his son to earth. He is the light. He shows us what God is really like. After his death and resurrection, he explains he will send a helper, the Holy Spirit, and explains that he is with us until the end of time. So, this heavenly light came and left, but is now somehow within us.
We have the opportunity to enjoy the presence of God in our life – I argue that pure presence with God is what Heaven is like – and then pour out to the world the results of that relationship. We can reflect that light on the world around us.
A container of heaven
Container of heaven,
All that is worthy,
Seeker of seekers,
I, too, am
A container of heaven
When I invite pure presence,
Give my life,
Shine light on what is worthy,
Seek the seekers,