“For by Him all things were created, both in the heavens and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities—all things have been created through Him and for Him”
I have a strong belief that wherever you go, God is already there.
One of the ways I have experienced His presence is through the beautiful works of religious art we have seen in both Dublin and France over the past couple of weeks. I have a great appreciation for any kind of art because I don’t have an ounce of artistic talent even though my grandmother was a gifted sculptor and painter. I also love religious art because you can see the care and love of God that is evident in the various works.
In Dublin, around 800 AD, Irish monks created a beautifully decorated manuscript of the four Gospels called “The Book of Kells.”
For example, Matthew’s gospel opens with three decorated pages. First there are symbols of the Evangelists around the cross, then there’s Matthew holding his Gospel, and after that the enlarged words Liber Generationis (The Book of the Generation) setting the stage for the account of Jesus’ life. There are other artistically created pages through this gospel.
As I toured The Book of Kells exhibit at Trinity College, I kept thinking The monks who created the Book of Kells really loved the LORD. Why else would they take that much time to be so precise? In addition to the intricately hand-painted images, they also hand wrote the words of the Gospel. It took an estimated seventy-five years to complete this version of the Gospels.
Meanwhile, at Versailles, the home of French King Louis XIV, there was a mix of the religious and secular. There were paintings like this one showing Mary Magdalene washing Jesus’ feet…
and then there was the ornate chapel where the king participated in church services from his balcony. It caused the imagination to wonder what worship was like back then.
Yet God is everywhere. I saw His handiwork even in the gardens of painter Claude Monet. Monet ended his life as an atheist, difficult to believe when you see the beauty of the flowers and trees he cultivated in his gardens.
I also see God in the diversity of people from all over the world gathered to take in the same sites we are experiencing. Thankful today for this journey, and also grateful for a beautiful week weather-wise after the advance forecast predicted rain.
God is good. You don’t have to look too far to see His glory.
“‘Am I a God who is only close at hand?’ says the LORD. ‘No, I am far away at the same time. Can anyone hide from me in a secret place? Am I not everywhere in all the heavens and earth?’ says the LORD” (Jeremiah 23:23–24, NLT).