|Lilac Festival, Highland Park, 11X14, oil on canvas, by little ol' me.|
My Jewish neighbors are celebrating Shavuot, which commemorates the day God gave the Torah to the nation of Israel. We Christians will observe Pentecost this coming Sunday, when we will commemorate the descent of the Holy Spirit upon the Church. The two holidays are closely related, and they are both based on the idea of gifts from God.
We are often so quick to throw away God’s blessings. A friend told me that she was advised to stop eating tomatoes for health reasons. “But Galicia has the best tomatoes in the world,” she said. “I can’t not eat them. It would be a sin.”
|Sam spent most of his time talking to curious passers-by.|
For some unfathomable reason, the human animal loves making rules by which he denies himself pleasure. The first and deepest of these revolve around food. Whether we are talking about the dietary restrictions of religion or the modern rules guiding the “worried well,” the end result is the same: self-denial that purports to make us better on physical, moral, or spiritual planes.
|One of the "delicacies" of the Lilac Festival is deep-fried turkey legs. I will not embarrass the young person who actually attempted to eat one. I hope he survives.|
Last Saturday, I made a tentative date to paint at the Lilac Festival today with Bella, Sam, and Jake. Today dawned with that delicate, airy beauty that is unique to spring in the Northeast. But I have a lot of non-painting work to do, and I felt torn—should I be “responsible,” or should I go paint with my young friends. But I realized that I couldn’t knowingly toss out this gift of a beautiful day, given me to enjoy by a God who loves me. And it was wonderful, and it was a joy, and an old geezer stopped by and told me a great joke:
“What is difference between a professional artist and a Domino’s pizza?
“The pizza can feed a family of four.”
|Bella struggling to keep her easel upright.|
There are still spots open in our mid-coast Maine plein air workshops! Check here for more information.