Lenten Art Devotions and Fine Art Prints for Families

Lent is a time of contemplation.

During these 40 days, we contemplate Jesus’s life here on earth. The precious three years of His active ministry in which He gave us His sacred words, His healing, as well as His beautiful example of love. He showed us how to live. We meditate on His life and His sacrifice in this season of spiritual renewal, and we enter into self-reflection to discover what might be holding us back from living His way.

As with Advent, we already know what is coming. We enter this season, however, not anticipating a birth but rather waiting for a death. As Jesus did so long ago, we know that this story includes overwhelming grief. And pain. And blood. And as with His birth, His death was unexpected. A shock to those who had followed Him. Our Hallelujahs are silenced. Christ has died.

But though the story includes a death, it does not end there, and that is the miracle of Easter. That is the beauty of the Resurrection. Our grief gives way to overwhelming relief. To joy. To thankfulness. The Messiah has come. Christ is risen. Death has been defeated. A new way of living and a new freedom from the slavery of sin is His gift to us.

And though He has ascended into heaven again, we know that He will once again come back to us. That His Resurrection wasn’t His final appearance here. Our Hallelujahs return. Christ will come again.

Lenten Art Devotions

Christmas and Easter can easily be considered the most important holidays of the modern Christian calendar, with the latter arguably being at the top of the list. Because of this, a few years ago, I decided that I wanted to find a way to set apart these holidays and the preceding liturgical seasons from the rest of the year for my family.

Visual art can offer a way of allowing us true contemplation. To notice details and immerse ourselves in a story. To let that example soak into our hearts and minds and stay with us. By looking at an object or painting that presents a subject beautifully, we can quiet our minds and truly focus on that subject while also taking in the beauty of the art itself.

As such, I was inspired to combine my goal of setting apart these holidays with my love of art, and I began offering art devotions for the two liturgical seasons preceding these important holidays: Advent and Lent.

For the Lenten season, the 40 days after Ash Wednesday through Good Friday and leading up to Easter Sunday, we focus on the ministry of Jesus here on earth. His life is an enormously common theme in art history, and there are so many rich and beautiful images that offer more ways to contemplate that, as well as His example of love. I enjoy discovering how artists have interpreted common themes and portrayed Him, especially during those three years before His death. I’m excited to announce that this year’s volume is now available!

As with the selections I’ve included in past years, I am very excited about the art featured in this year’s volume! These carefully-curated paintings include:

  • Childhood of Christ – Gerard van Honthorst (ca. 1620)
  • Resurrection of Jairus’ Daughter – Vasily Polenov (1871)
  • The Calling of Saint Matthew – Caravaggio (1599-1600)
  • The Disciples See Christ Walking on the Water – Henry Ossawa Tanner (ca. 1902-1912)
  • Jesus Washing Peter’s Feet – Ford Madox Brown (1852-1856)
  • Ecce Homo (Behold the Man!) – Antonio Cicero (ca. 1860-1880)

You can find Messiah: Lenten Art Devotions Volume V, along with the six accompanying high-quality art print sets in the shop! The 16-page Lenten art devotion guide can be ordered as a book that includes professionally-printed copies of each piece, or as digital files that you print at home.

The guide offers an art selection for each week of Lent, along with brief meditations that include Bible verses, a hymn, and a poem to accompany each painting. It also includes a resource section at the end for the hymns that contains links and QR codes to sheet music, instrumental versions, and live recordings. The PDF option includes printable versions of each piece, and I also offer professional prints on thick, smooth-coated cardstock as a separate purchase.

As with the Advent Devotions guides, these seasonal art devotions are not meant to serve as a traditional picture study and differ from the Picture Study Aids in that I have not included information about the paintings themselves (other than title, artist, date, medium, dimensions, and current location). My vision for adding art to our liturgical traditions was not to include more academic opportunities but rather more possibilities for art contemplation and meditation. My hope is that these Lenten art devotions allow you to contemplate the time of Jesus’s ministry here on earth and immerse yourself in the beauty of His love for us!

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  1. What ages do you think this would be good for?

    1. I think any age, really. It’s very simple. Just a work of art, and then a hymn and poem to go along with the theme of the art. 🙂

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