Monday, December 26, 2011

Merry Christmas 2011

Gabriel’s Message,  6” x 4”, linoleum cut print
Luke 1:30-32

This year I have been studying angelic beings throughout Scripture.  They are the heavenly messengers,  guardians and worshippers of God appearing to man at numerous times beginning in Genesis and continuing to Revelation.  Very few books make no mention of angels.
The Christmas story includes the angel Gabriel appearing to Zechariah, Mary, Joseph and the shepherds.  The message is the same:  do not be afraid.  Because of this repetition,  I settled on imaging the annunciation when Mary heard an unexpected message;  she  would become the mother of Jesus,  the Son of the Most High!  Though I’ve never seen an angel as Mary did,  I can imagine how troubling it must have been; how naturally fearful she was.
In the present state of our nation and the world,  I can feel fearful, too.  I’m vulnerable to the chaos of unexpected natural disasters, financial insecurities, joblessness, threats of international terrorists, consumerism which teases me with unhealthy choices and other things.  Fear can creep into my thoughts. What ifs sometimes take over rational thinking.
So the Christmas story brings hope to me:  God’s involvement with Zechariah, Mary, Joseph and the shepherds  shows his concern for mankind and me. He has purposes for the world and will take action to ensure these purposes are carried out—including the gift of redemption through Jesus.
©copyright, phyllis thomas, 2011