When my art studio moved, I wanted to give it a new name. It wasn’t long before the idea of “Nehemiah’s” started rolling around in my mind. Now I have a great rescue dog named “Nehemiah,” but I named the dog as a mascot for the gallery (not the gallery after the dog 🙂 . He’s quite comical. But that is a side note.
The story of the studio/gallery has a deeper meaning.
For a long time I have liked the story in the Old Testament of Nehemiah. It’s an inspiring story of building up from the ashes. A man named Nehemiah was working in a land away from his roots (and his heart). So when one of his brothers came to visit Nehemiah asked how things were at home? The answer he received devastated him. Things were terrible. “They were in great trouble and disgrace.” And to top it off the wall around Jerusalem had been torn down and the gates burned by fire. The people were completely demoralized. Not a pretty picture. Nehemiah’s response was to sit down and weep and for days he mourned, prayed and fasted.
As a result of this tragedy, Nehemiah came to believe that God has put an idea in his heart and the rest of the story is how Nehemiah approached the King (gutsy move for a cup-bearer) and was granted what he needed to go help boost the morale of those in Jerusalem. By wise and selfless leadership, Nehemiah created a climate of hope and courage whereby the people rallied around his idea, and the wall was rebuilt and the families were reunited and built up. It was quite a turn around.
The name “Nehemiah” means “God is compassionate,” or as a children’s book so aptly put it, “God wipes our tears.”
Nehemiah is a story of hope.
I want my studio and gallery to be a place of hope. And that’s where this part of the story starts, and the future begins.