In 1999, my family and I stopped in at Elder David B. Haight's office to deliver a birthday gift. As we visited with him, Elder Haight said that he had always like the painting, The Lord Jesus Christ, that I had done for the Church many years earlier. He said that he would like me to paint another version of that painting, only with a kinder, more gentle look. I began working on this painting shortly after that meeting, but it took me nearly three years before I was satisfied with how it looked. I really wanted it to look just right. The number one reason I painted it, was out of love and respect for Elder Haight.
After I sent a copy of the new image to Elder Haight, I received a letter back from him. It was just what he had in mind when he originally asked me to paint it. In his letter, he said, "It protrays the Savior as I visualize — Warm, friendly, kindly, and with love and compassion." He continued, "This portrayal of the Savior is your best yet, in my humble opinion." The new painting was named for the original challenge from Elder Haight: The Gentle Christ.