Today my children went to the Los Angeles Temple with their youth group. What a blessing this place is to my family. It is truly an oasis from the world; a place where heaven touches the earth– a holy place.
I got a letter from the wife of the artist who painted this painting. She told me a little of its history:
“One of the main reasons Kendall choose this temple to paint was because it was the temple that two of our daughters, who lived in California, attended. We had come to California to help one of our daughters with her new baby.
On a beautiful summer evening in August, while we were there, Kendall and I went to the Los Angeles temple to get references for this painting. We had never been as close to the Los Angeles temple as we were that evening. It was a delightful surprise to see the pool with flowers all around it and the special doors. The temple felt so apart from the world even though it was in the midst of it.
Kendall spent over a year painting this painting, putting in the feelings, and spirit he felt that night. He painted it so you could feel like you are right there in front of it, that you can walk right into it, and able to feel the warm welcome invitation from the Lord saying “Come Unto Me”. He painted the words on the front of the temple so they can be read and the doors so they feel like they can be entered in.
He named it “A More Excellent Hope”
“And I also remember that thou has said that thou has prepared a house for man, yea, even among the mansions of thy Father, in which man might have a more excellent hope; wherefore man must hope, or he cannot receive an inheritance in the place which thou hast prepared. Ether12:32 But reverence as holy, the Lord God in your hearts: and be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh of the hope that is in you with meekness and reverence.” 1 Peter 3:15
The detail on this painting is amazing. It can be made panoramic mural size, and still retains the detail. I love the close-up of the doors:
I’ve walked through these doors hundreds of times. Such a beautiful design in that ironwork, with so much meaning and imagery. It’s captured just right. I love to paint also, but this kind of detail is beyond my skill. A talent and a mission… the best kind of combination.