By Tricia Robinson

The Four: An Advent Image

These four women — Tamar, Rahab, Ruth, and Bathsheba — have something in common. They are all grandmothers in Jesus’s family tree. Affairs, prostitution, lies — these women had plenty of mess in their lives. But God chose them — four broken women — to be named in the genealogy of Jesus in Matthew 1. Their crowns symbolize not only their place in Jesus’s royal line, but also the grace and love of our Creator and Redeemer. Ann Voskamp describes this powerful grace (from The Greatest Gift, pg. ix):

The family tree of Christ startlingly notes not one woman but four. Four broken women — women who felt like outsiders, like has-beens, like never-beens.

Women who were weary of being taken advantage of, of being unnoticed, and uncherished and unappreciated; women who didn’t fit in, who didn’t know how to keep going, what to believe, where to go — women who had thought about giving up. And Jesus claims exactly these who are

And wondering
And wounded
And worn out
As his.

He grafts you into his line and his story and his heart, and he gives you his Name, his lineage, his righteousness.

May we walk forth this day, this Advent, this new year with new eyes to see grace in more beautiful ways, to give grace to others, and to receive grace from God.

To God be the glory.

Amen and amen.

About the Author

Tricia grew up in Georgia and spent hours drawing on big sheets of white paper, creating little worlds of girls and flowers. Her dream was to be a fashion designer in NYC, but instead she moved to Birmingham and has loved the community ever since. It was in Birmingham and on the beaches on 30A in Florida where she was inspired to start painting, and she loves to bring a sensus lusus (playful spirit) and joie de vivre into her art. “I want people to see my paintings and be inspired to view life with a little more playfulness and beauty.” That is Tricia’s hope: to bring smiles into people’s hearts through paint and brush. Find her at, on Facebook, or on Instagram.

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