www.heqiarts.com GOSPEL VIEW FROM CHINA He Qi first saw Jesus’ face in an old magazine. Now he paints his own images of the biblical story. "Artwork has no national boundary, but an artist always has his nationality," says He Qi (pronounced ho-chee) of China. Though a fine-art citizen of the world, He chooses to continue living in his native country. "I love my homeland because my life, my rejoicing, and my suffering have been closely linked with it." He also loves something more than his homeland. During the Cultural Revolution, He was in the countryside painting images of Mao Zedong. One day he saw Raphael’s Madonna and Child in an old magazine. "I was very moved by the softness of the Virgin’s smile," he told William McGurn of Far Eastern Economic Review (Feb. 26, 1998). "Everywhere around me people claimed to be seeking truth but had their knives out." Raphael’s painting alone did not convert He, although it did capture his imagination. "There are two different ways in China for people to become a Christian," he says. "One is by the strong influence from his family background; another way is by his own choice—‘step by step.’ I belong to the second way." He has done doctoral studies in Europe and has been an artist in residence in the United States. Currently he is artist in residence and professor at Nanjing Theological Seminary. www.heqiarts.com


Isaiah 9
For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given, and the government shall be upon his shoulder.

And hope comes where it is most gracious…
As we know, “Grace” means you are special to God and you don’t have to do anything to be considered special by him. As we begin the season of Advent, we are once again surprised by the way God works. If we need an illustration of how special God considers us, think of the alternative message. Think of how the divine appears when humans make us their religion.

Think of the ancient gods of thunder, lightning, the sun, powerful animals, like the bear or the lion. Why didn’t the ancients ever worship O, great God of the mouse? The sparrow god? God of the puddle?
Here is why. The true God comes to us in the most unassuming and gentle way possible. He becomes one of us as a baby. We might be wary of babies, discombobulated by infants, but no one is afraid of a baby.
God, in his wisdom, comes as baby Jesus announcing once and for all time as John says in Revelation 21:3,
“I heard a loud shout from the throne, saying, “Look, God’s home is now among his people! He will live with them, and they will be his people. God himself will be with them.“

What does it mean to worship a gentle God?

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