Sunday, December 23, 2018

Women of Advent - Bathsheba

This is the fourth and last Sunday of Advent,
and Bathsheba is the fourth and last Old Testament woman named 
in the genealogy of Jesus according to Matthew 1:1-17.

The story of Bathsheba is told in the second Book of Samuel.

The first king of Israel was Saul; the second was David.

King David
16th century sculpture by Nicolas Cordier
Borghese Chapel of Basilica di Santa Maria Maggiore

One afternoon, King David was walking on the roof terrace of his palace
when he saw a beautiful woman bathing at a house below.
He learned that this woman was Bathsheba,
 the wife of Uriah, a high-ranking soldier who was away fighting a war.

Bathsheba -  Women of Advent
Pastel pencil - 10X8

David was in lust with Bathsheba,
so he sent for her, and he slept with her.

A few months later, Bathsheba dispatched a message to David
informing him that she was pregnant.  
David hoped the child might be passed off as Uriah’s,
 so he summoned Uriah from the battlefront.

David encouraged Uriah to go home to spend time with his wife,
but he refused and returned to fight.

To conceal the sin of adultery,
David had Uriah killed in battle.

After a suitable mourning period, David married Bathsheba.

Bathsheba - Women of Advent
Acrylic ink w-pastel pencil / 7X5

   David’s actions so displeased God, however,
that their child died a few days after he was born.

Soon, Bathsheba gave birth to a second child named Solomon.
Although David had elder surviving sons by his other wives,
Bathsheba ensured that Solomon
was crowned the third king of Israel.

Solomon was gifted with unsurpassed wisdom.
Unfortunately, he squandered it,
but that is another story.

. . . . . . . 

This is the end of the short series. 

Finding  the Women of Advent course,
 an art and Bible study taught by Sheila Atchley,
 was perfectly timed.

It was a great way to slow down and step away from the consumerism
that surrounds the Christmas holiday, 
and to focus on what Christmas means to me.

I hope you make time to step away 
and focus on what this joyous season means to you.

Wishing you a very Merry Christmas!

See you next year.

Monday, December 17, 2018

Christmas Ornament Swap

Stephanie, over at The Enchanting Rose blog,
 hosted a Christmas ornament swap this year.
A warm thanks to you, Stephanie.

The rules were easy - buy or make a Christmas ornament and send it, 
along with a few little surprises, to someone you are randomly paired up with.
In return, you receive an ornament 
by someone who was randomly paired up with you.

So, double the fun - gifting and receiving.
And, more importantly, you make two new friends.

This was the generous gift sent to me by
Debby R., over at My Favorite Things blog.
Debby is a gifted writer and photographer,
and her blog is a reflection of her -
genuine, down-to-earth,

The packaging on her gift was so beautiful,
I hated to tear it.

Ah, but the goodies inside - the Hallmark keepsake ornament,
warm happy socks and some delicious hot chocolate (& lots of Christmas confetti).
Thank you, Debby!

Received from Debby R. in North Carolina

This is what I sent to Deb B. in Michigan.
Deb does not have a blog, but through e-mail we discovered we have quite a lot in common.

Deb shared how she celebrated Christmas with family and friends,
and spoke of her love of living in a big old farmhouse.

Sent to Deb B in Michigan 

It would be more interesting to show these gifts on and under a Christmas tree,
but the tree isn't going up until tomorrow.  
A little late getting in gear this year...

Sunday, December 16, 2018

Women of Advent - Ruth

This is the third Sunday of Advent,
and Ruth is the third woman
listed in the genealogy of Jesus according to Matthew 1:1-17.

Ruth is the eighth book of the Bible.

Because there was a famine in Israel,
a Hebrew family went to live in the neighboring country of Moab.
A woman named Naomi was the matriarch of the family.
Both of her sons married Moabite women, one of whom was Ruth.
Ruth was devoted to her new family
though she did not immediately share their faith.

After several years, Naomi's husband and both of her sons died.
Naomi decided to return to Bethlehem.  
Ruth insisted on going with Naomi
and pledged fealty to Naomi and to God.

When Ruth and Naomi arrived in Bethlehem, they were penniless, 
so Ruth went into the barley fields to glean.
A wealthy landowner named Boaz took notice of her;
he had been told of her incredible kindness to Naomi.

As it happened, Boaz was a relative of Naomi's late husband.  
This meant that Boaz could legally take Naomi and Ruth into his care.

Boaz boldly negotiated with another kinsman
 for the privilege of providing for the women. 
 Soon after, he very happily married Ruth. 
 They had a son named Obed.
Obed became the grandfather of King David.

Ruth / Women of Advent
Graphite / 5X7

The story of Ruth is a story of loyalty and love.
Words spoken by Ruth to Naomi
are often recited in contemporary wedding vows:

"Do not urge me to leave you or to turn back from you.
Where you go I will go, 
and where you stay I will stay.
Your people will be my people
and your God my God."
Ruth 1:16

Class lesson: lost edges

. . . . . . .

Will finish the series next Sunday
with Bathsheba.
I hope to see you then.

Sunday, December 9, 2018

Women of Advent - Rahab

This is the second Sunday of Advent,
and Rahab is the second woman
listed in the genealogy of Jesus according to Matthew 1:1-17.

Rahab's story is told in the Book of Joshua.

Church window depicting Joshua at Jericho

After Moses' death, Joshua became the person
to lead the Jewish people
into the Promised Land of Canaan.

The first obstacle was the walled city of Jericho.

In preparation for conquest,
Joshua sent two spies on a scouting mission inside the wall.

There the spies met Rahab, a local harlot and innkeeper, who lived within the wall itself.
Hearing of the miraculous events surrounding the wandering nation of Israel,
Rahab came to believe in God.

Rahab - Women of Advent
watercolor & pastel / 10X8

Rahab hid the spies from local soldiers
and then allowed them to escape down a rope that had been tied to her window.

In return for her help, the spies swore an oath that the Jewish army 
would spare the lives of Rahab and her family during the destruction of Jericho.
The spies told Rahab to replace the rope with a scarlet cord
 & leave it in her window as a sign of protection.

The spies honored their promise, and Rahab gained God's favor.
She became the mother of Boaz
and the great-grandmother of King David. 

. . . . . . .

The assignment was to portray Rahab in her later years.

First, the paper was covered with powdered graphite using a paper towel.
The image was started by erasing areas to create lights.

Charcoal laid in the shadows,
and a thin red line was used to symbolize the scarlet cord.

Rahab - Women of Advent
Charcoal / 10X8 

Hope to see you next Sunday.

Sunday, December 2, 2018

Women of Advent - Tamar

The Women of Advent
is a December Sunday series
spotlighting four women in the genealogy of Jesus.
It begins with the story of Tamar in Genesis: 38.

Tamar married into the house of Judah, but was soon widowed.
Her father-in-law promised Tamar that she would wed his youngest son
 when the boy reached the age of maturity.
In the meantime, Tamar was sent back to live in her father's home.

Eventually, Tamar realized her father-in-law had no intention of fulfilling the promise,
so she disguised herself and tricked him into a sexual union.
She become pregnant.

Upon the birth of twin boys, Tamar secured a legal place in the house of Judah.
Tamar's son Pharez would become the ancestor of King David
and Jesus Christ.

The tribe of Judah would become the most exalted of all the 12 tribes of Israel.

Women of Advent - Tamar
Charcoal on bristol paper / 10X8

Well, I went to bed last night with a sore throat and woke up with an awful cold.
Since this weekly Sunday series follows the online Women of Advent art class, 
 I did an easier charcoal drawing of Tamar to stay on track.

Artist instructor Sheila Atchley demonstrated her first lesson with oil sticks.
She also did a second lesson with gold gesso.
I'll do those lessons and add them at a later time.

Hope to see you next Sunday.

Saturday, December 1, 2018

Women of Advent

When I opened e-mail the other morning,
 there was a message from a favorite teaching site,

In appreciation for choosing her network for online courses,
Jeanne gifted current and former (me) students with a free class.
And there were tons to choose from!

So, in the spirit of the Christmas season,
I chose "Women of Advent"
taught by artist Sheila Archly.

Here is the class preview,
if you're interested: Women of Advent.

In Latin, advent means coming.
The season of Advent celebrates the coming of Christ,
and begins on the fourth Sunday before Christmas.

The Women of Advent series features four women
 in the genealogy of Jesus
as described in the New Testament, Matthew 1:1-17:
Tamar, Rahab, Ruth, and Bathsheba.
The fifth woman named in Matthew is Mary.

Advent begins tomorrow.

Hope to see you then.

Advent wreath