September 23-29 - "Walk in the Spirit"
Braden Burgon (American, born 1979)
The Sower (2014)
Linoleum block and print, image: 2.5 x 4.5 inches; 6 x 7 inches
Collection of the artist
Used with permission of the artist
The book of Galatians includes a discussion about consequences of actions. Paul writes, “whatsoever a man soweth that shall he also reap…. And let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not” (Galatians 6: 7, 9).
Art provides an opportunity to see the process of actions. In the case of linoleum cut prints, for example, the artist draws an image and transfers it to the linoleum by tracing the lines of the image into the linoleum surface. The block is carved with tools that gouge out the negative areas of the image, leaving the uncarved surface of the block to receive ink for printing. Oil ink is spread on a plate, and then a brayer rolls ink evenly onto the linoleum block. Finally, paper is placed onto the block, and with pressure, the ink is transferred to the paper, creating the image. Each print, then, is a document of all the steps required to make it. The artist reaps the actions sowed. Braden Burgon writes, “The printmaking process feels like a small exercise in faith. The resulting images aren’t as immediate as a painting or a drawing and the tools can feel unforgiving. But when I dive into the process, trusting the method and the materials, the results can be rewarding and often surprising."
Elder Dieter F. Uchdorf explains, "The restored gospel of Jesus Christ is a way of life. It is not for Sunday only. It is not something we can do only as a habit or a tradition if we expect to harvest all of its promised blessings. 'Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap' (Galatians 6:7)" ("Have We Not Reason to Rejoice?" October 2007 General Conference). Why does true discipleship require that we be "all in" rather than simply dabble in following Jesus?
In the process of creating linoleum cut prints, there is gouging to remove parts of the linoleum and pressure required to make the print. Both actions, however, require precision and care, despite the application of appropriate force. How does self control play a role in discipleship?
President Thomas S. Monson once said: “May I provide a simple formula by which you can measure the choices which confront you. It’s easy to remember: ‘You can’t be right by doing wrong; you can’t be wrong by doing right’” (“Pathways to Perfection,” Liahona, July 2002, 112; Ensign, May 2002, 100). How do the choices that you make shape who you are?