Last year I posted about my favorite Advent painting, Luc Olivier Merson's Rest on the Flight into Egypt (1879). I love the poignancy of Mary and baby Jesus in the arms of the Sphinx. It reminds me of the homelessness of the Messiah. How his first memories were those of an immigrant, a displaced person, a stranger in a strange land. God is always showing up in the strangest of places. I doubt, in today's world, he'd even be speaking English, just like he didn't speak Latin.
Anyway, I thought of that painting again today (with its related theological associations) reading this story (H/T Daily Dish) which comes from a comment from rhoner on a Reddit thread about picking up hitchhikers:
This past year I have had 3 instances of car trouble. A blow out on a freeway, a bunch of blown fuses and an out of gas situation. All of them were while driving other people’s cars which, for some reason, makes it worse on an emotional level. It makes it worse on a practical level as well, what with the fact that I carry things like a jack and extra fuses in my car, and know enough not to park, facing downhill, on a steep incline with less than a gallon of fuel.I don't mean this post to be political. It just made me thoughtful today, thinking about Advent and Jesus growing up in Egypt and what it all might mean for us today.
Anyway, each of these times this sh*t happened I was DISGUSTED with how people would not bother to help me. I spent hours on the side of the freeway waiting, watching roadside assistance vehicles blow past me, for AAA to show. The 4 gas stations I asked for a gas can at told me that they couldn’t loan them out “for my safety” but I could buy a really sh*tty 1-gallon one with no cap for $15. It was enough, each time, to make you say sh*t like “this country is going to hell in a handbasket.”
But you know who came to my rescue all three times? Immigrants. Mexican immigrants. None of them spoke a lick of the language. But one of those dudes had a profound affect on me.