As often happens, the painting “Captive” started out as something else in my mind and became what it is on its own. Over the years, I have enjoyed making loose, gestural line drawings. Fancy doodles, basically. I’ve decided that a few of these might be worthy of development into paintings, and so I am attempting to do just that.
This painting started as a rendering of the drawing “Worry,” but as the paint kept getting darker and closing in on the figure, I realized that it was, to me, worse than a little worry. It was fear, it was oppression and depression, it was all those thoughts we’d rather not have. It was a Captive, and thank God the captives can be set free.
We have all been captives at some point in our lives, and few of us are truly free. There are many things that can hold us captive – worry, fear, depression, oppression, poverty, ignorance, illness, and the list goes on. How can we live a life of freedom in spite of, or in the midst of, these circumstances?
In the Gospel according to Luke, Jesus announces his public ministry in the synagogue by quoting from Isaiah 61:
The Spirit of the Sovereign Lord is on me,
because the Lord has anointed me
to proclaim good news to the poor.
He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted,
to proclaim freedom for the captives
and release from darkness for the prisoners,
to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor.
Isaiah 61:1-2a, NIV
The phrase “freedom for the captives” may also be translated as “sight for the blind.”
Maybe this little painting will remind you of where you are held captive. My prayer for you, and for me, is that we will know the Truth, and the Truth will set us free.