2. A Firecrest in a Wintry Landscape

by Nicholas Mynheer

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Commentary by the artist

Nicholas Mynheer writes:

This image, in many ways for me, symbolises my religious experience.

I grew up playing on Otmoor. Often flooded during the winter and baked bone dry in the summer Otmoor remains a wonderful unspoilt wilderness in Oxfordshire. The vast skies and moody landscape dominate my vision as an artist.

I suppose, for many of us, it is when we encounter the beauty of Nature; the setting sun or the star spangled night sky that we are momentarily aware of the magnitude of creation; our own mortality within it and a sense of the Divine…

(Read the rest of Nicholas’ commentary)

Vicar’s reflections

Andrew Bunch writes:

Having a dog makes me rise early in the day and go for a walk in the countryside. Yes, there are many times when this is just a functional part of life, the dog needs a walk, it has to be done. But on those walks, frequently there are delicate and beautiful reminders of the wonder of creation. The silence is broken by a woodpecker seeking its breakfast. The deer look up from their grazing of the dewy grass, the concentric circles on the river betray the fish right below and the mist rising off the river is a reminder that we live at the interface between the seen and the unseen. A Firecrest in a Wintry landscape by Nick Mynheer is an important reminder to be alert to the beauty and wonder of such interactions with nature. If we can take a little time to stop and stare, then our view of the world around us can be refreshed and we can have a chance to notice signs of God’s glory in the midst of our ordinary everyday busyness.

(Psalm 29 appreciates how God’s power is witnessed in nature, best read in a modern translation.)