Advent in Art – 2nd Sunday

2. The Visitation: Elizabeth meets Mary at the C-bar over skinny decaf cappuccino and carrot cake.

The visitation: Elizabeth meets Mary at the C-bar over skinny decaf cappuccino and
carrot cake.
Jan Hynes, 2002.

Luke 1: 39-58 [The Message]
Mary didn’t waste a minute. She got up and travelled to a town in Judah in the hill country, straight to Zachariah’s house, and greeted Elizabeth. When Elizabeth heard Mary’s greeting, the baby in her womb leaped.  She was filled with the Holy Spirit, and sang out exuberantly,”You’re so blessed among women, and the babe in your womb, also blessed!  And why am I so blessed that the mother of my Lord visits me? The moment the sound of your greeting entered my ears, The babe in my womb skipped like a lamb for sheer joy. Blessed woman, who believed what God said, believed every word would come true!”

And Mary said,
“I’m bursting with God-news; I’m dancing the song of my Saviour God. God took one good look at me, and look what happened –  I’m the most fortunate woman on earth!  What God has done for me will never be forgotten, the God whose very name is holy, set apart from all others. His mercy flows in wave after wave on those who are in awe before him…. The starving poor sat down to a banquet; the callous rich were left out in the cold…. It’s exactly what he promised, beginning with Abraham and right up to now.”

Mary stayed with Elizabeth for three months and then went back to her own home.

When Elizabeth was full-term in her pregnancy, she bore a son. Her neighbors and relatives, seeing that God had overwhelmed her with mercy, celebrated with her.

Reflection: (look carefully at the image, from bottom to top)
The artist has depicted Mary and Elizabeth meeting in a specific café in her home town. The Spirit of God is represented by the seagull. God is present in the ordinary places and experiences of life as well as the bigger ones. What may be a surprise or shock to us is never outside the presence of God.  In what ways would Mary and Elizabeth have felt differently about their situations?

Expectations can be heavy on us at this time of the year. Invite someone to share ‘coffee and cake’ with you and talk about expectations you have carried for yourself, or others have imposed on you. Talk about what is reasonable and how you will respond. Every time you light the second candle remember the changes you want to make.

Advent in Art is a project of World Vision New Zealand and Australia for the spiritual nurture of their staff.

Author: DanutM

Anglican theologian. Former Director for Faith and Development Middle East and Eastern Europe Region of World Vision International

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