Approval

The Red Vineyard, Vincent Van Gogh

The Red Vineyard, Vincent Van Gogh

I don’t remember when I first became aware of his work but over the last decade Vincent Van Gogh has become my favorite painter.

I especially love his work after he had become influenced by impressionism. I love the saturation of his colors and the sweep of his brush. I love the way he captures moments in time. I expect to see his subjects move, wheat fields sway in the breeze and crows to fly off his canvas.

I have to confess that part of my fondness for his work may be that I identify with Van Gogh. Certainly not in his genius but in his ordinariness-in his anguish and heartbreak. He was a man of a gentle and troubled soul for whom Hamlet’s slings and arrows would prove too much.

I want talk to Vincent, to tell him of the beauty in his painting. I want to encourage him in his early faith. To tell him that he is not alone and that there are many others who struggle and yet find strength in the one who created the earth he painted so beautifully.

I used the image of his work, The Red Vineyard, on our homepage and I’ve included it in this post. It was the only painting he sold during his short lifetime. I take to heart it’s warning to me and to anyone else who is tempted to judge life and worth by trends of thought or fashion. Approval is a dangerous desire. Use the gift you are.