Sunday, December 21, 2008

Tanner's Annunciation

This might be my favorite painting in the world. All over the internet this time of year, it remains fresh to me. In the past I've liked it because, frankly, Mary looks a lot like I did as a very young woman, and her puzzled expression confirms the likeness.

This year, I've noticed other things. The messy bed. The worn surroundings.

The uncompromising light.

Is that what we pray for, when we are so bruised and fragile that the flames of the advent candles threaten to engulf us in sorrow?

A birth that can lead only to Good Friday, because it is only there that we can be sure that God knows us?

Uncompromising, indeed.



(Cross-posted from Advent blog.)

5 comments:

RevDrKate said...

I so appreciate that you bring us these things with new nuances. Yes, opposite ends of the Advent spectrum...you are ever in my prayers

ROBERTA said...

i doubt i'll look at my advent candles today w/o thinking of sorrow & that "uncompromising light"....

thank you.

Stratoz said...

I love that painting too, but I think you know that already. Thanks for sending it back my way. Peace.

Presbyterian Gal said...

That is a great painting. Thank you for posting it.

I always wonder what Mary's relationship was with Jesus as a small child. I like to imagine that it was a warm and playful one.

Anonymous said...

"A birth that can lead only to Good Friday, because it is only there that we can be sure that God knows us?"

Aye, GG. I guess in all the madness, it's the only thing that's crazy enough to make any sense of it at all.

Mich