Ode to Thomas Kincaide
It was sad to see Thomas Kincaide pass away on Good Friday of this year.
May 2012 -- Nuggets of Faith
I was saddened to learn of Thomas Kincaide’s death on Good Friday. He had a unique way of capturing images on a canvass that made you want to climb in and become a part of the scenery. The church settings of many of his paintings are absolutely breathtaking. His artwork has inspired scores of Christians throughout the years.
Through the years, there has been much discussion and opinionating regarding his art. Many in the fine art community would say his paintings are not true art and that he was just peddling his mass produced images to a Christian audience to make a quick buck. A number of articles about his death highlight his struggles with alcohol and recent legal problems.
Unfortunately, people will see his supposed struggles with the bottle and other issues as being hypocritical to the message of Christianity that he spread through his masterful paintings. But, could it be that from the depths of his struggles he was painting a world that he longed to experience? Through the history of the Christian church, there have been many great saints who overcame their struggles that have impacted the body of Christ.
Think back to the beautiful hymns of Fannie Crosby who was physically blind. One of her later hymns demonstrated a special vision that Ms. Crosby had as recorded in an article on the European-American Evangelistic Crusades website:
When my lifework is ended and I cross the swelling tide,
When the bright and glorious morning I shall see,
I shall know my Redeemer when I reach the other side,
And His smile will be the first to welcome me.
Would we dare say that Fanny Crosby was blind in the soul as well as physically handicapped? She could see more with her faith than most of us will behold in a lifetime with our natural eyes. Could it be that Thomas Kincaide longed for a life without the pain and guilt he experienced in his battles here on earth? Just as Mrs. Crosby’s blindness may have equipped her to see with greater eyes of faith, Mr. Kincaide’s own struggles helped him to express a faith through stunning tapestries of beauty.
As I sit and remember the wonderful times of walking through his galleries, I realize that I don’t think I ever said a single prayer for him. What difference would it have made in Thomas Kincaide’s struggles if people truly prayed for him? The Bible tells me in James 5:16, “The prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective.” Thomas Kincaide has gone on to his heavenly reward and I look forward to seeing him and meeting him. But, now in the weeks since his death I must ask myself, “Who in my realm of influence is struggling and how should I be praying for that person?” My prayers may make the difference in their life. Imagine how your life would be different if you knew someone was praying for you regularly.