Monday, October 25, 2010

Day Seventeen: An Art Piece

The art that I love is very simple, tells a story, and is usually church related.  Greg Olsen, Simon Dewey, and Del Parson are three of the most recognizable names in LDS art.  The following are a few of my favorite pieces, some of which I am lucky enough to have hanging throughout my home.   

Be Not Afraid
Greg Olsen

Forever and Ever
Greg Olsen

In His Constant Care
 Greg Olsen

 Living Water 
Simon Dewey

Del Parson

The last four pieces of art come from a collection of paintings that depict different scenes from the lives of Joseph and Emma Smith.  I am blessed to have all four of these paintings in my home.  All painted by Liz Lemon Swindle, I included the stories about what event inspired each painting, as written by Liz.  These are my favorite pieces of art.
My Beloved Emma

"What unspeakable delight, and what transports of joy swelled my bosom, when I took by the hand, my beloved Emma – she that was my wife, even the wife of my youth, and the choice of my heart."

"Many were the reverberations of my mind when I contemplated for a moment the many scenes we had been called to pass through, the fatigues and the toils, the sorrows and sufferings and the joys and consolations…"

"Oh what a commingling of thought filled my mind for the moment, again she is here, even in the seventh trouble, undaunted, firm, and unwavering- unchangeable, affectionate Emma."

-Joseph Smith, Jr. 1844
Father's Gift

After losing a son, Joseph and Emma knew tragedy again in Kirtland, Ohio, when their newly born twins died within hours of birth. Losing children a second time was almost more than they could bear.

A few miles away, tragedy also struck the Murdock family. After bearing twins, Julia Murdock died, leaving her husband not only with the newborn twins, but five other children as well.

Brother Murdock heard of the Smiths’ great loss and called the prophet to his home. There, out of grief and selfless love much like that of our Heavenly Father’s, Brother Murdock asked Joseph to take the twins and raise them as his own.

With difficulty and humble gratitude, Joseph carried the twins back home and placed them in the arms of his weak and grieving wife Emma.
While Emma Sleeps

The adopted twins of Joseph and Emma, Joseph & Julia Murdock, were now eleven months old and had been suffering with a difficult case of the measles. Shortly before midnight on March 24, 1832, Joseph sent his exhausted wife to bed with their daughter Julia. Joseph stayed up to care for his infant son, Joseph Murdock, and it wasn’t long before they were both asleep.

Suddenly a vicious mob of more than 25 men burst through the door awakening all within and dragging Joseph outside by his hair. Emma ran behind screaming, but was powerless to stop the mob. Amidst the confusion, the front door to the home was left open and the twins were exposed to the frigid night air. This was too much for the already sick Joseph Murdock, and five days later he died.

Going As A Lamb

Can any of us imagine how it felt on that fateful summer morning when Joseph said goodbye to this family on the front lawn in Nauvoo before heading to Carthage?

He must have known he would never see them again because he said, "I am going like a lamb to the slaughter; but I am calm as a summer’s morning; I have a conscience void of offense towards God, and towards all men. I shall die innocent, and it shall yet be said of me – he was murdered in cold blood!" – D&C 135:4


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