The Painting 2

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His father, whom they call Geode, is the Painter of the universe.

He taught his son everything he needed to know about it; the hopes and dreams he had for the people within.

Benjamin knew his father’s love flowed into the Painting. He understood how simple life could be. He longed for the day he could be a part of it, and when the day came, he was born with the knowledge he needed to change hearts and minds.

Growing up with this awareness, teaching those who’d listen, Benjamin found himself in his element. Yet when fears grow too strong, they can cause a world to fracture.

Can Benjamin share his message, before time runs out?

Description

Excerpt from “The Painting 2”

Gerald Oliver Delaney secured the safety of his world, the painting, from all.  He hid it deep within its own self-contained universe.  Yet, even though it was so very far away, he could still hear the hopes and prayers of the humans he had painted.

Over time, Gerald had willed wonderful things to happen within the painting.  Miracles and wonderment flowed from him into the universe so all within could be reminded of his love.  He still appreciated and felt the joy this magical world gave to him, but time had passed.  Gerald had grown up.  He had married.  He had a son, and he had told his son all about the painting.

His son, Benjamin, had grown up knowing the love of his father.  He had felt the approval and acceptance this world never offered to his father. He’d shared in the enchantment and delight of his father’s love for the people of the painting.  He’d witnessed the pain and agony of his father’s hearts for them.  He’d watched tears fall, heard laughs belted out loudly from the silence of his room and felt his father’s turmoil as he stood by listening to the calls and cries of his people.

His son knew what the painting meant to his father, and he had grown up longing to see this world for himself – but he couldn’t.

He’d asked.  He’d pleaded with his father to let him visit it, but his father had refused.  At first he was too young.  Then he needed to focus on his studies.  Finally, it became too dangerous for him. But his son persisted.

As the years passed, his son learned how time worked differently in the painting, that one day in his own world was a year in the painting.  That the people had changed over time.  Some were good, some were bad.  The stories of his father had grown and morphed into something much more supernatural and thrilling.

He also learned that there were many, many people in the painting now who doubted his father’s existence.  They didn’t believe he was real and they ridiculed those who did.  The painting had become something it was never intended to be – conflicted and hostile.

That was when the son realized he absolutely had to go to the painting.  He had to set things straight.  He had to teach the children of the painting about his father, about the truth, the real reason it was created.  But the pathway to get in was obscure.  A door had to be created.

Eventually, the solution came to him.

Before, when someone wanted to visit the painting, all he had to do was walk in.  It stood on the ground and the simple step was easy.  But now, the painting had been placed into its own universe.  The only way new life was brought into the world was by being born.  The only way life left the world was when it died. It was a simple, yet painful solution.

He had his father’s love.

He had his will, his desire and his hope.

He too contained the magic within to create, and so he did.

He shared his plan with his father who adamantly protested at first but then relented. He sent word to the people of the painting about his son’s arrival and the news spread across the land.

He hugged his son tightly and shed a tear, knowing very well what he was about to do.

He pleaded one more time for his son to stay.  He begged him, but his son persisted.  He knew how important it was for the people to know about his father.  He was determined to set them straight.

And so, in the hours of darkness, in the quiet of the night, Gerald opened the magic of his heart, willed a gateway into the painting and sent his son through.

With a cry in the night, a distant shrill, Gerald heard his son being born.  He wept as he listened into the painting and witnessed the miracle of his son growing up once again to become the man of whom he was so incredibly proud.

 

The Painting Trilogy

Book 3 of this Inspirational Trilogy will be out early 2020!

1 review for The Painting 2

  1. Peggy Marceaux

    Mrs. Shields’ transition from Genesis, in The Painting 1, to the New Testament in The Painting 2, is imbued with the same, soft gentleness she imparts in her view that love and kindness is the fabric that binds all God’s creation. In this case, Gerald, or Geode, as the name the people from the painting in the universe give him, had since married his friend, Tiffany, and now feels he must send their only child, a son, Benjamin, into that painting to carry on his message of love and kindness to the multitudes of generations that live there now. After all, one year in Gerald’s world is only one day there, and there is no more time to waste to get his messages to those who never knew him. Since he gave them all free will, some may not always try “to do the right thing” or have the courage to love and be kind without some support. Benjamin doesn’t understand why he has to go, but his father tells him he must to continue to spread his messages. So, off Benjamin goes to the painting in the universe; however, Gerald tells him reluctantly that something evil will have to happen to him, and to be prepared to face danger.
    Herein begins the parallels to, and the parables in, The new Testament, but with humanity at the core of the “miracles,” rather than blatant divine intervention. When Jeffrey frees the buck’s antlers from the mass of brush, he feels he couldn’t have done it without divine help. The first evidence of a Doubting Thomas is referenced here when Franklin says Jeffrey, “I’ll believe it when I see it.” When Benjamin picks up a seemingly dead bird later, and it revives, most onlookers proclaim “it’s a miracle,” but Benjamin says nothing, even as the naysayers say the bird was just stunned. People have a right to believe what they wish, the thought, though he preferred them to lean towards love and believing. Then, under the tree of life, Benjamin gathers with his friends, (by now disciples?) to discuss how we should all care for every living creature, even this tree and all those who don’t like us. He explains that it’s his father’s plan, even, to let lightning knock off tree branches so termites can feed. Shields’ also parallels the division of loaves and fishes, only this time it’s the masses of people who add their food to a lone basket and pass it around to feed one another while they wait for Benjamin and his friends to descend from the mountain. Yet again, Benjamin and his fellow believers sup together one last time, just before evil Sammy plans to kill him and the whole stadium of baseball fans at a game. Again, Franklin implicates himself as Doubting Thomas by selling Benjamin out, not with 30 pieces, but by locking the gates to keep Sammy’s friendship, so no one could escape the stadium, setting the stage for Benjamin to martyr himself by jumping on the bomb to save everyone. That’s when his message of love, to the degree of sacrifice, rings the loudest to all who both followed and didn’t follow him. Finally, as Benjamin awoke in his father’s home, he asked Gerald to go back one last time (the Ascension) and let everyone know he is fine and to further encourage them to continue to help his friends/disciples/apostles carry Gerald’s message of love and kindness to all his creation.

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