Saturday, December 13, 2008



I love Advent – a time of waiting in breathless awe and expectation of what God will do. But God is a God of surprises and nobody expected a small helpless baby, born to ordinary people who would soon become refugees – these were not the expected circumstances surrounding the birth of the King of Kings and Lord of Lords.

This painting by Fernando Aritzti is always part of my Advent preparation–‘it represents the love of God for our African American people in a voyage of time and space. It shows the history of these people from their beginnings in Africa.
On the lower left side is a Zulu warrior with shield, looking up into the sky; below him stands a princess also looking up; to her left are two slaves, one standing and the other sitting on the ground.
This grouping of figures is the representation of millions of Africans who were brought in shackles from the motherland. They are watching their beloved land disappear over the horizon - a homeland they will never see again.
In the lower center of the painting are plantations of the deep south where slaves laboured in the fields for many years in the most dehumanizing conditions. These figures look steadfastly up into the sky.
On the lower right side of the painting the figures represent their African descendants. Though their lives have changed significantly since the civil rights movement, still today they are victims of prejudice in most levels of society.
Their pain-filled existence has not been overlooked by the loving and compassionate God.
On the center right side are the souls of the deceased ascending to God as the Son descends from God's hand. "Emmanuel" - God among us. My painting endeavours to emphasis the facet of God made human- the great gift of incarnation for all people of the world in time and in space.' Fernando Arizti writing in Christ for All People: WCC publications

Waiting for what?
For all to have clean drinking water.
Waiting for what?
For all to have food.
Waiting for what?
For women to be treated equally to men.
Waiting for what?
For workers to receive a fair wage.
Waiting for what?
For the rich to share their wealth.
Waiting for what?
For the caste system to end.
Waiting for what?
For baby Jesus to be born.
This is some Advent.
Waiting for rather a lot it seems .

Rosie G Motion

1 comment:

Catriona said...

Thanks Julie,
Saw the painting and went 'wow';read the words and went a level deeper. A lot of waiting indeed.