I wanted to create a painting that confronts the lack of faith and doubt that I constantly encounter in my spiritual journey, hoping to communicate to the viewer that we all share a common bond of struggling with answers to the great questions of life. For the imagery, I looked back to the Old Testament story of Jacob wrestling with the Angel, depicted throughout history by artists such as Rembrant van Rijn, Eugene Delacroix, and Paul Gauguin.
In my painting, I am the one wrestling with the angel, wrestling needlessly with a God who has redeemed a world that seems irredeemable. The muzzled lion is a reference to Hebrews 11:33, where Paul describes people throughout the Bible who “through faith conquered kingdoms, administered justice, . . . (and) who shut the mouths of lions.” The image of the fetus in the corner depicts my coming face-to-face with the next great leap of faith in my spiritual journey—having children.