Ah! I've been waiting all Advent to post the above picture. You can find it in the Art Blog section of Episcopal Café.
Here's a wonderful thought:
Who knows the influence of a mother on her unborn child? Here is a world of mystery which is still not wholly understood. But is it not possible that something of the concept of dedicated servanthood which was at the very heart of this young pregnant woman ‘got through’ to the child as yet unborn, and became an integral part in the shaping of his manhood and ministry? . . .
Mary saw, with a God-given clarity, at the moment of her greatest crisis, that servanthood lies at the very centre of the meaning of life as God intends it to be lived. Servanthood, obedience, in the great crises of life and in the little decisions of everyday, Mary saw as things of first importance. And so she doubtless taught the little boy on her lap, at her knee, through all his formative years....One of the greatest gifts that a mother can give to her children is not only to pray for them but, from their earliest years, to teach them to pray. We may be sure that Mary's little boy was not very old when he began to pray the prayer which his mother used when first she knew she was pregnant: ‘I am the Lord’s servant; may it be to me as you have said’, or, to put it more simply and shortly, ‘Your will be done’.