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His Fold

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Heavenly Blossoms

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Calming Embrace

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Star of Wonder

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He is not Here

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Bookworm Girl

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Waiting for Answers

“Therefore I will look unto the Lord; I will wait for the God of my salvation: my God will hear me.” Micah 7:7

This was me a few months ago. I had so many questions. I knew the direction God wanted me to go, but was tripping up on the details. Every day it felt like this, and my neck was starting to hurt. We live in a world of instant gratification when it comes to obtaining information, most answers are only an internet search away, but when the answers we really need can only come from Heaven, it can be hard to wait. The beautiful thing is, however, as I worked on this painting, the solutions I was looking for came. I know that God hears and answers our prayers. We might have to wait a day, weeks, months, or even years, but as we look, the answers will come.
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On the Tops of the Mountains Shall They Leap

The second chapter of Joel, in the Old Testament, starts out with a blowing of a shofar, or a ram’s horn, which was a call to battle. This is the battle that is to precede the second coming of Jesus Christ. Joel then describes the people in God’s army as, “a great people and a strong; there hath not been ever the like, neither shall be any more after it, even to the years of many generations”(vs. 2). They have the appearance of horses, and “as horsemen, so shall they run” (vs. 4), “on the tops of mountains shall they leap” (vs. 5), “they run like mighty men; they shall climb the wall like men of war;” (vs. 6), “when they fall upon the sword, they shall not be wounded” (vs.8), “they shall run to and fro in the city; they shall run upon the wall, they shall climb up upon the houses; they shall enter in at the windows like a thief” (vs 9). They sound like super heroes. Where does their strength come from? Joel gives us a clue in verse 11, “And the Lord shall utter his voice before his army: for his camp is very great: for he is strong that executeth his word:”

I’ve thought a lot recently about the duality of our being, how we are both body and spirit, and I believe as you strengthen one part, it enhances the other. When I read about God’s people in Joel, it reminded me of a group of people that were living up to their potential both physically and spiritually. They obviously had incredible physical strength and stamina and had trained their bodies to run, leap, and climb. However, they also listened to their leader, and they did more than listen, they accomplished what they were told to do. This combination of physical and spiritual strength, made them unstoppable. And though the world was filled with darkness, gloominess, and a devouring fire, the land before them was as the garden of Eden (vs 2-3).
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Stormy Skies

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Golden Hour

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Our Master

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Though Your Sins be as Scarlet

Isaiah 1:18
Though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow.

In this scene, the woman is condemned to death for her sins, but Christ in His wisdom saves her from that fate and admonishes her to “go, and sin no more.” (John 8:11) Symbolically, her robe is red, representing her sins, but as she reaches towards Christ, it is beginning to fall away. In contrast, the scribes and Pharisees cling to their sins, symbolized by their own heavy crimson robes. Full of pride, they pull away from the light of Christ. The woman kneels humbly in the light before her Savior, and in return she finds salvation and feels the redeeming power and joy of the Atonement.
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One Shepherd

John 10:16
And other sheep I have, which are not of this fold: them also I must bring, and they shall hear my voice; and there shall be one fold, and one shepherd.

Whenever I read this passage, I think of the beautiful diversity of all of God’s children. From the outback of Australia to the northernmost parts of Alaska to the savannahs of Africa, mankind has grown and formed families and raised children with the hope that those children would be happy and, in turn, start families of their own. This scripture reminds me that Christ came to this earth and repented for the sins of all humanity so that the way would be paved for each and every person to return to live with our Father in Heaven again. We are all children of the same God, brothers and sisters in Christ.
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Living Water

John 4:14
But the water that I shall give him shall be in him a well of water springing up into everlasting life.

In this account, we hear Christ bear witness to the woman at the well that He is the way to exaltation. Just as physical water sustains and relieves our thirst, the water that Christ gives us, the gospel, gives relief to our souls, heals our wounds, and makes our burdens light. Christ stands before not just the woman, but all mankind, and testifies that He is the Son of God. If we would drink of the truths of the gospel, seek after Him, and do His will, we will thirst no more, and those truths will lift us up unto eternal life with our Father in Heaven.
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King of Kings

Matthew 2:11
And when they were come into the house, they saw the young child with Mary his mother, and fell down, and worshipped him: and when they had opened their treasures, they presented unto him gifts; gold, and frankincense, and myrrh.

The account of the Magi visiting Christ as a child has long been the subject of paintings and stories. It is touching and inspiring to envision the wise and learned traveling to present gifts and honor to the young Christ. Though tradition places the Magi in the manger, the scriptures indicate that Christ may have been as old as two when they arrived. I can imagine traveling with the Magi with a growing anticipation of seeing the young Christ. After a long journey and arriving at His home, the Spirit bears witness that He is the King of Kings, my Redeemer, my Savior—and with gratitude I have the opportunity to lay my humble gifts at His feet.
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I Will Wipe Away All Your Tears

Revelation 12:4
And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away.

I Will Wipe Away All Your Tears

The Gospel of Jesus Christ holds many blessings. It brings us peace in turbulent or trying times. The doctrines inform us where we came from and what our purpose is in this life. It also promises us many great and wonderful blessings, one of which is the return of Jesus Christ. When Christ does return many scriptures will be fulfilled.

For many who have suffered or are suffering there may be one promise that resonates more than any other, that He will wipe away all our tears. Christ is the Saviour, Redeemer, the great healer and bringer of peace. This is His mission, His purpose, His promise. - Howard Lyon
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I Am a Child of God

Romans 8: 16
The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God

Among the greatest treasures of knowledge that we have been given is this: we are all the children of God. This truth carries with it great blessings. It should guide us in how we treat those around us and in how we view ourselves. Each of God’s children are of great worth with immeasurable potential. In this painting, we see children from many different cultures and backgrounds. They stand with Christ, bearing witness with Him that they are children of God. All of the kids look directly at the viewer, confident in the joy they feel in the presence of their Savior. When we strive to see others as God would see us, our hearts are softened, our minds are opened, and the Spirit comes to dwell with us, bringing peace and joy.
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Gethsemane

Luke 22:41-43
And [He] kneeled down, and prayed, Saying, Father, if thou be willing, remove this cup from me: nevertheless not my will, but thine, be done. And there appeared an angel unto him from heaven, strengthening him.

My painting of Gethsemane was done as reminder that when we are in need of aid our Father in Heaven is not only ready but anxious to send angels to our side. Christ, in His perfection received the sustaining hand from above in His moment of greatest need. How much more likely then are we, in our imperfect state, to receive that same help when we are faced with trials?
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Feed My Sheep

John 21:17
…Lovest thou me? And he said unto him, Lord, thou knowest all things; thou knowest that I love thee. Jesus saith unto him, Feed my sheep.

In this painting, Christ is depicted in the role of the Good Shepherd. He holds firmly to the rod, representing the law of His Father. It symbolizes the commandments and teachings that help to keep us, His flock, safe. Christ’s countenance expresses the mercy of the Atonement and the path back to our Father. If we should stray from the safety of His flock in this life, we know that our Shepherd will find us if we call out to Him. We have also been given the charge, like Peter, to help our Savior in the work of bringing salvation to His flock, to feed His sheep. We will have the chance to bring nourishment to those who come across our way if we are willing to serve.
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Come Follow Me

"Come, follow me," a simple phrase,

Yet truth's sublime, effulgent rays

Are in these simple words combined

To urge, inspire the human mind.

From “Come Follow Me”, words by John Nicholson



The Savior invites us to follow Him, to come in out of the darkness and into the light. He brings order to chaos, hope to sorrow and light to darkness. No petition is rejected and all are invited in.
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Redeemer

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Alpha and Omega

Revelations 1:8
"I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end, saith the Lord, which is, which was, and which is to come, the Almighty."

It can feel like the world is spinning out of control at times. War and conflict sweep over nearly the entire earth. It would be easy to fall into despair over the state of mankind if not for the knowledge that Christ stands at the center, ready to give hope and promise to those who seek Him.

I find comfort in knowing that Christ comprehends all things and His will ultimately triumphs over sorrow. He is the Master of the earth, the oceans and the skies. He is the Beginning and the End, Alpha and Omega and everything in between (represented by the 3 stars in the upper sky).
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A Thread of Faith

Luke 8:48
And he said unto her, Daughter, be of good comfort: thy faith hath made thee whole; go in peace.

We have all been injured and have known the desire to be healed. Whether those hurts are physical, emotional, or spiritual, Christ beckons us to His presence to be healed. Here, the woman reaches towards the prayer shawl, tallit, or garment of Christ, and by touching the threads of His garment she is healed. Hers was an act of faith. By reaching out to Christ, she made a covenant to follow Him, and in return He healed her. She did not sit idly by the wayside, but actively sought out the Savior. While we will endure hardships and injuries in this life, there is peace to be found in following Christ. By doing so, we open the way for the Atonement to heal our pains so that we, too, may “go in peace.” (Luke 8:48)
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Salt Lake Temple

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Christ Ascends

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A Pillar of Light

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Awaiting the Harvest

“Say not ye, There are yet four months, and then cometh harvest? behold, I say unto you, Lift up your eyes, and look on the fields; for they are white already to harvest. And he that reapeth receiveth wages, and gathereth fruit unto life eternal:” John 4:35-36

I know these boys not only have a few months, but a few years before their missionary service, however I feel the preparation for that service is hastening. Never has the world been so hard and never has God needed stronger laborers for His harvest. I love the look of conviction in the eyes of these brothers, and though they are standing together they each look a different direction. A foreshadowing of the day when a common cause will send them to labor in different parts of the world.

“The harvest truly is plenteous, but the laborers are few; Pray ye therefore the Lord of the harvest, that he will send forth laborers into his harvest.” Matthew 9:37-38
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Among Thistle and Thorn

Since the passing of my son, two and a half years ago, art has continued to be a source of comfort and healing. So many tears have been shed as I’ve worked through grief, taking it from my soul and releasing it on the canvas. This kind of art therapy has led to a small collection of paintings that I’ve recently completed.

I did a painting a couple years ago entitiled, “Leaving Eden”. This painting is the follow up to that one. After Adam and Eve left the garden, God told them that the ground would be “cursed” and begin to bring forth “Thorns also and thistles” (Genesis 3: 18) and that all this would be for their “sakes”. Well if our summer in Ensenada was our Eden, then the following September was definitely our hard crash into the land of thistles and thorns. I learned what sorrow really was. I learned the vast chasm of emotion that comes with parenthood. I learned that only when you have truly loved, can you truly know sorrow.

So many times I found myself looking up to heaven, as I imagine Adam and Eve did, wondering, “What do I do now? I don’t understand why you had to send me through this particular path. I don’t know why you would want me to hurt so much. But I trust you, and I’m here. So help me know where to go.”

I do believe that all the trials we go through are for our “sakes”. I do believe that we are here on earth to gain wisdom and experience, and some things you can only learn by going through them. I still don’t know all the reasons why God felt it necessary to take my little boy home, but I know someday it will all be made clear, and in the meantime I just have to keep looking to heaven and walking by faith. And really, this constant reaching for God really has made me stronger, my soul deeper, and has brought a new kind of maturity. My soul feels older now, like God asked my spirit to grow up a little, and I think in the growing I came to know and understand Him a little more in the process.

So I thank God for bringing me out of Eden, if it meant one step closer to Him.
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Looking Up

I believe Christ is the ultimate optimist. Over and over again in the scriptures he shares messages of hope and peace:

“…let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.” John 14:27

“In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.” John 16:33

I believe Christ was always looking up, both in an attitude of hope, and also in looking to the Father for direction. I see these two kinds of looking up as being connected, for when we look up to Heaven for guidance we also find peace. We receive instructions and promises for the future.

The phrase “looking up”, is only used in the scriptures a couple of times, but in each incident, it precedes a miracle. Christ looked up and then he healed a man’s ears and tongue (Mark 7:34-35). Christ looked up and then he fed five thousand with only five loaves and two fishes (Matthew 14:19-21). I believe as we look up to God and strive to follow his instructions, we will also find happiness and hope, and sometimes we will also see miracles.
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That We May Be One

When beginning this painting, I noticed all the times in the New Testament that Jesus took himself apart to pray. Even the Son of God needed time alone to commune with the Father, even such that he would rise “up a great while before day” (Mark 1:35) or even after a long day of hearing some terrible news, and healing the sick, and feeding 5,000 he went up alone into a mountain to pray (Matthew 14:13-23). It’s obvious that Christ needed the strength from prayer, because many times after prayer he would go on to do something truly miraculous like raise Lazarus from the dead (John 11:42-43), walk on water (Matthew 14:25), or save mankind (John 17, Luke 23:34-46). I think if Christ needed that connection with the Father, that strength offered through prayer, how much more then do we?

When designing this composition, I liked how the hands coming together became a symbol, two becoming one, and how this mirrored the desire for our wills to come in line with the Father’s will through prayer. During the great intercessory prayer, Jesus prayed for us, saying, “Holy Father, keep through thine own name those whom thou hast given me, that they may be one, as we are” (John 17:11). I love that Christ offers us all the same relationship that He has with the Father. As these hands come together, nothing between them, so God waits for us to come to Him. However, in order to do so, we have to get our grudges, our grief, our sins, our addictions, our pride out of the way first. And it is Christ who takes down those walls:

“For he is our peace, who hath made both one, and hath broken down the middle wall of partition between us;” (Ephesians 2:14)

Jesus not only set the pattern of prayer, He made prayer possible for us. The atonement of Jesus Christ offers us the grace that we, though imperfect and broken, can still approach the throne of God and find healing, find peace, and find home.
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Hartford Pathway

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Redlands Eventide

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Allerieirauh

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Burnt Umber

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Churchyard

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Light Of The World

John 8:12
I am the light of the world: he that followeth me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life.

This simple passage of scripture defines much of what it means to be Christian. To follow Christ means a life of compassion and service. It does not mean that there will not be heartache or trials. It does not mean we will not stumble and fall. Hardship is part of life, but Christ, through His Atonement, will be there to clear the path back to the light, bringing hope to an imperfect people trying to be better.
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Mary Kept All Of These Things And Pondered Them In Her Heart

Luke 2:19
Mary kept all these things, and pondered them in her heart.

Mary has found a brief, quiet moment to contemplate. There is a little concern in her eyes, knowing that there will be pain and hardship in the life of her child, but hope as well, for she knows that God loves her and has a plan. She smiles as she reflects on the joy she feels when thinking of her son. Motherhood brings many emotions. Fear, joy, pain, hope, concern, and nearly inexpressible love can all be part of motherhood. No doubt Mary felt inadequate, but steadfast and faithful—humbled, though honored, to have been chosen to be part of Christ’s life.
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