In reality, Christ the Redeemer statue in Rio fronts the downtown area. As If He, Jesus, is giving a blessing to the corporate wealthy. You’ll notice that I’ve reversed His position to reflect a blessing on the poor, favelas, pictured in front of Him instead. They are the people that most need the help from our Savior to persevere their spirituality in the face of having to survive in their unforgiving physical realm. What’s ironic is the fact that it’s exponential easier for the downtrodden poor to thread salvation’s needle with their lean camel than the rich with their fat one. So in a very real since of the word, the poor are blessed (at least spiritually speaking) by their physical insufficiency, while the rich are not because of their overabundance (although, not necessarily always the case across the board).

I’ve used a gray to reflect a conservative, controlled, money and greedy seeking, abstract cityscape played off against a much more colorful atmosphere exhibited by the peoples’ hill houses of lesser means. They may be poor, but they’re passionately poor. And usually passionately religious also. Of course the background mountains are so positioned to reinforce and mirror Christ’s outstretched arms’ gesture of blessings.

If one uses their (god-given) talents wisely, they probably can expect a fair amount of abundance (material wealth) coming their way. On the other hand, spiritual abundance comes when we obey the word after having put on Christ in baptism. And being materially blessed (after becoming spiritually blessed in Christ) is certainly not an automatic given as some TV evangelists would lead you to believe.

Again, I have broadly painted Christs face in the Christ the Redeemer statue so as to not depict any details that might be construed as representative an exacting likeness of Jesus. Likewise, an abstract head treatment in the shadowed area of Christs the Redeemer statue pretty much conceals Jesus’ true identity in this secondary image. (This is just my rationalization for taking the liberty of painting this subject matter in the first place).