By Sage Gutierrez


The desert sky in winter is special. In the midst of a cold and dull season, when everything is turning brown and gray, the sky transforms into a masterpiece. On the drive home the other day, the setting sun painted a breathtaking picture. The brilliant colors flowed together and contrasted against the dark blue mountains. I snapped a photo with my phone and recreated the scene later using a base of gouache paints, along with watercolors to help the hues blend more smoothly.


I often view the nearby mountain range as ordinary and mundane, but sometimes it demands my attention in a way I can’t ignore. Its steady presence is like a symbol of God’s everlasting love and mercy, which may be understood but is sometimes treated as commonplace. We know His love is immovable, yet life’s distractions can pull us away from that encompassing truth. Moments like this sunset remind me how blessed I am to be loved by my Maker and how the earth declares that fact so beautifully, for all to see.


“Your mercy, O LORD, is in the heavens; Your faithfulness reaches to the clouds. Your righteousness is like the great mountains; Your judgements are a great deep; O LORD, You preserve man and beast.” (Psalm 36:5–6)

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