Negative Space in the Bible


In design we deal with a concept called negative space. It’s the empty space around a design or image. Where negative space becomes compelling is when it’s used as a part of the design or image itself to bring a richer concept.

Sometimes when I’m reading Scripture it’s negative space or the story that isn’t told that grabs my attention. I’m intrigued by the untold elements as if they were withheld on purpose. Not because they weren’t important but because God encourages discovery.

What you find might not be life changing. It may not even be interesting. But, every once in awhile, it may just make what is there richer than before. The negative space can never replace what is actually said but once you have come to a stand still with a passage perhaps explore what isn’t there.

Ask questions. Step back from the scene and see what seems to be missing. How does it relate to what is there? Place yourself in the negative space. How does that make you feel? What you learn may challenge you, encourage you, or it might just make you think. Either way, the negative space of scripture might be a journey worth taking.