By Rev. Lori Ethridge
Minister to Senior Adults
Recently I heard about an art exhibit at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City which spans 600 years and includes over 200 unfinished works by renowned artists like Titian, Donatello, Van Eyck, Rembrandt, Cezanne, Pollock and Rauschenberg. In the collection there are works that are obviously unfinished, and not simply because they do not bear the artist’s signature. They are unfinished because life somehow interrupted the creative process. Others only seem unfinished, allowing the unresolved and open-ended concepts to remain as a part of the viewer’s visual experience. The exhibit begs several questions, “When is a work of art finished?” and, “Is it considered a masterpiece if it is unfinished?” According to the exhibit’s curator, the artist himself or herself deems whether a work is complete or not. She went on to say if the artist has realized his or her intent, then the work is considered complete. The qualification of the term “masterpiece” is a bit more ambiguous.
This discussion between the curator and the interviewer fascinated me; automatically several scriptures came to mind. From the cross Jesus said, “It is finished” (John 19:30). As Christians we believe that, in his death on the cross, Jesus realized God the Father’s intent to be a living sacrifice so that we would not perish in our sins, but have
eternal life through faith in him. The Apostle Paul says that he who began a good work in us will carry it out to completion (Philippians 1:6) and that we are God’s workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do the work that he has ordained (Ephesians 2:10). Even though God is not finished with us yet, we are confident that Christ’s finished work on the cross makes us masterpieces by faith! That is Good News!
See you after Annual Conference.