July 22-28 - "The Lord Had Called Us for to Preach the Gospel"
Susan Krueger-Barber (American, born 1975)
Empathic Overload (2016)
Collection of the artist
Used with permission of the artist
Any student of the New Testament sees the political as well as theological boldness of the gospel message. Some artists in the Church also address social issues in ways that build community and empathy.
Susan Krueger-Barber, a resident of Provo, Utah, created a 2016 exhibition, Empathic Overload, as a response to the Church Handbook of Instructions changes in 2015 regarding the LGBTQ+ community. Susan writes of her exhibition held in Provo, “As I wrestled within myself to comprehend the varied reactions to the Church’s policy change, I collected quotes from theorists regarding the human experience. The sloganed balloons acted like a thousand voices yelling, crying, whispering, celebrating, shriveling, popping—even remaining the same—whatever property a balloon happened to encompass during the show’s duration. In addition, reflective emergency blankets covered the walls, mirroring and refracting the viewer as well as ideas from all spectrums. In this way, the gallery acted as a container for people to process their own experience and build empathy toward others.”
"Jesus said love ev'ryone;
Treat them kindly too.
When your heart is filled with love,
Others will love you." (Moiselle Renstrom, Children's Songbook, no. 61)
What is an example of Jesus showing love for another that speaks to you? How does showing love for others demonstrate that you are following Jesus? How can your showing of love help another to understand his/her relationship with Heavenly Father?
2. During Paul's third missionary journey and while in Ephesus, many were touched by the word of God to the point that they confessed, changed their ways, and "brought their books together, and burned them before men; and they counted the price of them, and found it fifty thousand pieces of silver" (Acts 19:19). How can collective demonstrations of changed hearts bolster the commitment of individuals within the group? Think of a testimony meeting, youth conference, choir, or other gathering where you felt your commitment to follow Jesus reinforced by having been part of such a gathering.