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Overcoming Trouble 
Home :: Inspiration :: Overcoming Trouble
A couple months ago I had an opportunity to observe the moon. It was an evening of trouble. The equipment had technical issues so I had to redo several things and restart the scope. I intended to use oil paints but could not find some things I needed. I could not remember where I put them. When I started, it was a jumbled time of rearranging things because I was not properly set up in the first place. Then the paint issues started. I had to fight with brushes, fight with thick paint, and fight with mixing. I had trouble getting shades of grey; I had trouble getting good contrast; I had trouble getting whites where I wanted them. When I was done, I was exhausted. I put up quickly and crashed into the bed.

This is a poor digital photograph of the oil-on-wood painting of the crater Goldschmidt. To my surprise, it turned out pretty well, but it was certainly not a pleasant evening.

As I have thought about the evening in late May, I still remember the pain of the night. The Holy Spirit reminded me of this scripture in John 16: "In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world."

Compared to catastrophe or serious illness, trouble with a painting is nothing. But the trouble was enough to teach the lesson. We have learned this lesson a few times in our lives. We will probably continue to learn it. In Christ, the believer's troubles have a larger context that is more real than the trouble at hand. Do you know that kind of big picture perspective in your life? It is meant for us to know Him that way. The older we get and the more troubles we see around us or experience, the more we remember His overcoming power.

We really are not living for here and this temporary life. Something much bigger is going on. If you are a believer, take heart. If you are not a believer, call on Him. Choose to turn from your ways to Him and let Him do that extra-ordinary thing: save your soul.

His overcoming power is meant to be place of reckoning--where we choose to put trust in His accomplishment on the cross: He overcame this messy world for us. How great a love He has for those who believe in Him!


Technical Note:

1. Equipment for the observation:
     a. LXD75 mount with C8 telescope
     b. Astro-video camera (MallinCAM ProDob) set at 1/3000 second electronic exposure
     c. Monitor for study: 14 inch, black and white, high resolution

2. Media for painting:
     a. Winston Newton oil paints (black, grey, white)
     b. Board: sanded thin plywood primed with a quality flat black acrylic; about 10 x 14 inches

3. Time:
     a. About 50 minutes to paint the scene
     b. Drying time after painting--about 2 weeks
     c. White notes: opaque white marking pen

4. Photo note: automatic digital camera with muted light and no flash (some contrast and detail was lost; the faint yellow hue is from the lighting)

"...whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers of mine, you did for me." Matthew 25:40

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