by Lisa Are Wulf ~
I recently saw a documentary film about Johannes Vermeer, a 17th century painter. I was struck by one element of his work. While others at the time created elaborate backgrounds in their portrait paintings, Vermeer was different. He often set his subjects against a wall that was either empty or had very little decoration.
Because of this, his paintings give a unique and startling view of the soul of the person in the portrait. I wondered what I would look like against an empty wall. What would the viewer see? Would goodness and light shine through, or would they be overshadowed by less desirable traits?
Is this how Jesus sees us – without all of our background noise? The answer is probably yes. But if that’s true, maybe we don’t need all the noise and distraction since it doesn’t matter anyway. Perhaps all that is required is to live simply and transparently. That would be enough.
What would you look like against an empty wall?