Shalom was created with Holbein oil pastel and a spreader.
During a season of intense spiritual warfare, Kaila came upon Priscilla Shirer’s, 'The Armor of God' in her desperate search for biblical assurance and stability. The portion that most impacted her was Ephesians 6:15, which described putting on the shoes of peace.
The enemy is the lord of chaos and confusion, the opposite of peace. Anywhere peace is lacking, the enemy is at work. He thrives on tempting believers with anxiety, turmoil, anger, and conflict in relationships.
John 10:10 is particularly poignant: “The thief comes only to steal, kill, and destroy. I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.”
At the time, Kaila's life was anything but peaceful. She felt weak, vulnerable, crippled, and stuck. She wanted desperately to believe this verse, but her doubt, perfectionism, anxiety and despair were points of vulnerability.
How, she questioned, does an imperfect believer protect herself against the enemy’s tactics described in Ephesians 6:12? Paul instructs God's people to function as a unit, supporting each other with Truth and grace. It is the difference between a soldier and a gladiator. A gladiator may win individually. A soldier can only be victorious as part of a greater army, each member wearing his or her 'caliga', or shoes of peace, rooted firmly in the ground.
Individually, we must live the life of the Gospel, which is our justification, our supernatural power to stand firm with a deeply rooted sense of peace and hope despite our circumstances. Through salvation, the peace of God is already in us, we must choose to cultivate and activate it in our lives.
As believers, we activate our shoes of peace by trusting in the Lord and expressing gratitude through prayer. These truths are demonstrated in Philippians 4:6-7 and Colossians 3:15.
Kaila created 'Shalom,' the Hebrew word for peace, as an illustration of activating the shoes of peace inspired by Ephesians 6:15. This type of peace does not refer to the absence of chaos, but rather to an overall sense of peace and wholeness in the midst of chaos. Kaila wanted to represent this tension in her work.
In 'Shalom', Kaila's use of pure white represents the Gospel, a believer's true security like a lighthouse during a storm. The relationship between pink and teal represents the raging storms in life and the active practice of gratitude through prayer.
Gratitude amidst struggles is difficult, but with the Gospel, we are already victorious (John 16:33)! God rewards this type of prayerful, grateful faith with His peace. It calms our fickle emotions, breaks down barriers, tames our sharp tongues, and redirects our negative thoughts toward the security of our Savior, Jesus Christ.
Finally, the light blue and tan represent the tranquilly and support believers should find in community with one another as a reflection of oneness in Christ.
With Gospel-centered, prayerful gratitude, we stand firm as a body of Christ with shoes of peace amidst the battle raging before us.
Kaila S. Anderson, LMSW
Shalom' is an original oil pastel work. The dimensions are 14"x14" on BKF Rives Printmaking Paper.
Original not for sale.
Prints available by emailing KailaAndersonArt@gmail.com.
Inquiries to view other original works or for questions to the artist, please email KailaAndersonArt@gmail.com.
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