The angel in the Christmas story used to be a boring character. A more-than-man being that showed up, spit the facts, blessed a woman, and took off. Later on he showed up and sang to a bunch of lowly shepherds.
Julie Vivas changed that for me. Two days ago I posted one of her illustrations from her amazing book The Nativity. The angel in her version is scraggly, messy haired, and excitable. He sits at the table in Mary’s home over a cup of coffee. He holds the baby while the couple prepares to flee to Egypt. He nearly flies into a tree.
The thing about Bible stories and characters therein… they are not static. They are changing and the language of expression has grown since Bible times. We are now blessed to have a litany of words to use to describe how someone said something.
Now when I read that the Angel Gabriel spoke to Mary, I hear exclamations and hallelujahs!
We are going caroling tonight and we are exclaiming the joy of the announcement of the birth that day.