Tickell Expressions

Friday, 19 June 2015

The Wise Took Oil

Hello Friends,

Yesterday, during an early morning quiet time with the Lord, I noticed a lamp giving off rainbows. They looked like long poles; two on the right side and two on the left side. I had seen this once before from this lamp, but this time I felt compelled to sketch it. As I prepared to draw, the poles stretched into banners. Two banners were on the right and one banner stretched between the two poles on the left. Then, as I started to draw the banners something startling began to take shape. A wooden figure appeared, as though holding the light of the lamp. It didn't change again the whole time I drew it. I would look down for a while, sketching, and when I looked up again, what I saw remained the same. I can't explain this and there were no feelings associated with it. It was just there.

I am learning to let my art happen, without any need to explain it while it is unfolding. Once I completed my rough sketch, I asked the Lord what the vision meant. Right away I thought of Jesus' parable of the 10 virgins. (Matthew 25) Five were wise and five were foolish. The wise virgins brought extra oil to replenish their lamps, while the foolish five did not.

Even though all 10 virgins grew tired of waiting and fell asleep, the five with extra oil were quickly able to prepare when the bridegroom came for them. The lamps of the other five were also going out by this time. They tried to buy more oil, but it was too late. By the time they arrived to the wedding feast, the bridegroom told them, "I don't know you."

All of my life I pictured the bridegroom in this parable coldly turning the five foolish virgins away, but another story was revealed to me through my own painting.

Since I was doing a two-page spread, I used the same water colours for the backgrounds of both pages. I had worship music on and sensed the leading of Holy Spirit as I splashed paint on both pages. When I had completed the main painting and written the scripture on the facing page, I noticed a figure at the bottom.

He appeared to be hunched over and I felt that he was in sorrow. It came to my mind that this was a picture of Jesus, as the Bridegroom, having to turn away the foolish virgins who had not taken extra oil with them. It is with great sorrow in his heart (not coldness) that Jesus will turn away those who never took the time to know him.

What does the oil in the parable represent? I believe it speaks of the Oil of the Lord 's Presence. Being a Christian has little to do with religion and everything to do with relationship. God wants to be in relationship with us. He wants to speak to, listen to and connect with us. He wants to touch us in tangible ways that will bring unspeakable joy to our lives. His Presence is real.

There will be times of dryness, when it seems hard to detect His Presence in our lives, but if we have made a habit of seeking Him, especially in the secret place where no one else sees, then we will have a store of Holy Oil. Our wicks will quickly ignite as soon as He comes near and our passion for His Presence will be rejuvenated.

Have you collected Oil for your lamp today?

Thank you for visiting my blog. I hope you were inspired by my words or my art. No matter where you are on your faith journey, just know this: You are beautiful and you are loved.

Blessing hugs,