A few years ago, I was given for my birthday a print of a painting by Jay Bryant Ward entitled “Under His Wing”. It portrays a young girl of perhaps 6 or 7 years of age. In the painting we see that someone is standing next to her, but all we see of this adult at her side is half a waist, and a right arm which is protectively behind her – not touching her, but in place to ensure that she would be quickly secured in the event of need.
There is an obvious implication in the painting that the adult at this small girl’s side is keeping close and constant watchful care of her. Although we can’t see the face, we know the identity of this adult, because we see the hand placed carefully to ensure this small girl’s safety, in the middle of which is the unmistakeable mark of a nail having pierced it. In many ways this is a very simple picture, but for me it is profound beyond measure. Continue reading