The breath that put life into all creation takes its first gasp of desert air. The voice that spoke the universe into existence sounds as a baby’s cry. The spirit that roamed the universe becomes a tiny body of dust and water. This is God’s greatest gift — the birth of the Savior.
The cover art for this issue uses both vertical and horizontal movement to capture the magnitude of the moment when God descended to earth to live among us. In Ain Vares’s mystical painting, light spills down from the heavenly star as worshipers lift their arms in praise and thanksgiving for the gift that God has sent. The horizontal movement of Vares’s work is seen in Mary’s arm resting lightly on Joseph as they contemplate the Savior’s birth. A shepherd clasps his friend’s shoulder in a gesture of sharing. Light pushes through the crowd and shines out into the darkness, representing the light we bring to the world when we are in relationship with others. The more we grow in relationship with one another, the greater the light becomes. The vertical and horizontal aspects of Vares’s work can be applied to our lives and relationship with God as well. We can celebrate God’s gift to us by worshiping God through praise and thanksgiving, and moving into closer relationship with one another.
Cover photo courtesy of the artist. © 2010 Ain Vares. Prints of cover art are available at www.ainvaresart.com.
The United Methodist Church in Honduras uses El Aposento Elto, the Spanish language version of The Upper Room daily devotional to start new faith communities. They use "An Easy Plan to Use The Upper Room in Small Groups" found in the back of the magazine. As the groups grow, they build critical mass for new church starts.