“Kissing the face of God” by Morgan Weistling is my favorite image of Mary and the baby Jesus, that’s why it becomes my profile picture every December. I also like this other work by Del Parson portraying Jesus as a young child for several reasons:
– It too, addresses those years of Christ’s childhood that we know so little about – just like the picture I posted earlier with young Jesus working alongside Joseph.
– Mary looks like she’s in her early teens, which is probably an accurate account of how young she was when she became a mother. Mothering is a high a holy calling. It’s overwhelming — especially the first time around. How much more intimidating would that be as a teenager – a teenager entrusted to be the mother of the Son of God? I don’t worship Mary or pray to her, but I most certainly hold her in highest esteem. Mary and Joseph, first-time parents, welcomed Jesus into this world alone. There was no one there to assist them. I’ve had that same experience with my husband. Being alone for that was unexpected, but at least I’d had three previous children, and after the fact help was a phone call away.
– Jesus is looking at Mary with complete trust. He has so much to learn from her. She ultimately has so much to learn from him. When we get it right, that is true of all mothers and their children. Sometimes we are the teacher. Other times we are the student. The level of trust Heavenly Father has in each of us in those roles humbles me.
– The halls of the school my children attended K-8 are filled with beautiful, inspiring artwork. That’s where I first saw this Del Parson picture and determined I wanted a copy to hang in my home. I hung it in the hall to their bedrooms to remind me that although these 5 little kids were “mine”, I really had no idea who they may be destined to grow up and become. I’m not comparing them to Christ or me to Mary, but do any of us really comprehend how important our homes and influence are or who or what our children may become? I wanted and needed to be reminded of that during the normal day to day interactions I had with each of them, and I hoped they’d see it too.
And another reason I like this picture is because the artist (Del Parson) is a Rexburg ID guy. Great talent and great influence can emerge out of any location – including Rexburg and Nazareth. “Can there any good thing come out of Nazareth? Philip saith unto him, Come and see.” John 1:46
That same invitation is extended to all of us, too. Want to know Him and how to be like Him? “Come and see!”