True Image


Altar of holy face entirety cropped

In case you haven’t been paying attention, I’m quoting Mark Batterson, the author of Draw the Circle, a lot these days. That’s because our church is using this book as our Lenten study, so I am writing reflections from what we read there.

Mark talks about how many people have circled various things in their prayer life and have experienced tremendous results. Including himself. When we hear stories like this, we may come to the conclusion that “drawing the circle” is like a magic trick—a way to get God to give you what you want. But Mark is clear, “God is not a genie in a bottle, and your wish is not his command.”

Your prayer requests start by knowing what God wants and what God wills. Pray his promises, trust his goodness, and plug your prayer life into his power supply. Then it doesn’t become about getting what you want but about glorifying God, which is our goal.

The artwork today is a personal favorite of mine. It is a mosaic in the St. Patrick’s Cathedral in New York City. Every time I’m in New York, I go to St. Patrick’s and pause in front of this depiction of Christ. Notice the tear falling from his right eye? Sometimes, if I stare at the image long enough, it feels like Jesus’ eyes lift to meet mine.

The title of this piece is, “Altar of the Holy Face,” and is one of many works based on the miracle of St. Veronica. The story goes that a woman named Seraphina stooped to wipe the blood from the face of Jesus as he carried his cross to Calvary. When she did this, the face of Christ was miraculously imprinted on her towel, which has been preserved at St. Peter’s Basilica in Rome as a relic of the Catholic church. The relic is called “Veronica’s Veil.” Vera Icon means “true image” in Latin, and over time, the two names were blended together and Seraphina became Veronica, which literally means True Image.

Being Human connection: May the True Image of God imprint upon your heart.

Featured art: Mosaic, “Altar of the Holy Face,” St. Patrick’s Cathedral, New York City

Here is the altar in its entirety. Beautiful, isn’t it!?

Altar of holy face entirety