Last night I had the extreme pleasure of visiting the Taubman Museum in Roanoke, VA with my family. On Thursday evenings from 5 pm – 8 pm the Taubman is open with free admission. The museum is easy to find. From Hillsville you take I-81 North to exit 143 ( which is 581) and then take exit 5 which is downtown Roanoke. From there you get on Salem street and the museum is right around the corner. You can’t miss it! It looks like this big stainless steel mirror and glass bird. It is quite the contrast to the rest of downtown Roanoke. It doesn’t “blend” in, rather it stands out for all to see. I like that. I think art and architecture should stand out and catch people’s attention. It gives life a “voice.”
I heard a lot of life “speaking” to me through the exhibits I saw there. As a Christian artist I love themes that revolve around God’s Word. My mind works in such a way that I can see God’s Word in just about anything. It doesn’t mean that the artist intended it that way, however I think that we all interpret art in a personal way that is unique to our lives. I saw the “world” speaking through a particular exhibit that has gotten my undivided attention. On this exhibit there is no artist name or explanation, but it is not needed as it speaks volumes. It is a harsh reality of what many people face every single day of thier lives and I am in awe of the artists who created it. Thank you whoever you are!
This is a woodcut which has been stamped onto fabric and then sewn onto a tent. It speaks to us of the poverty that is in the world today. The poverty that we so often overlook. I saw evidence of this at the museum. As I was looking at this exhibit I noted how many people would walk around it, then sort of realize what it was and then quickly walk away. Are we having trouble facing reality? For me, this exhibit was like a slap in the face. Another one.
Several months ago-in the winter months-I was introduced to a young man who was homeless. Right here in Hillsville. I won’t go into his story however, this piece of art reminded me of my young friend. Not long after meeting him, our Associate Pastor met another young man who was also homeless-again in Hillsville.
My life revolves around my family, work and church-NOT the homeless. I am not conditioned to seeing the depravity of man in my own hometown.
So, what does this say?
I think it says a lot as we see and live in our economy on this rollercoaster ride. This could be any one of us at any given time. There are no guarantees in life. At least not here on earth. The only guarantee I have is seeing heaven when my body fails to work any longer. How do I know this? Because I have been saved by the Lord Jesus Christ and I pray that you have been too!
In order for us to reach people, we must meet thier needs first. We must show them love, an unconditional love that says, “come, let us help you, come, let us feed you, come, let us clothe you, come, let us put water to your parched lips, let us put a roof over your head, let us help you with your children, let us love you the way that God loves.” No conditions, no judgment, no screwed up faces of disdain or ugly grimaces. Just love. In it’s purest form. Jesus said: “Love one another as I have loved you….”
He didn’t die for us to screw up our noses and walk away…
Will you love someone today? This could be anyone of us…
Please visit the museum soon!