For those accustomed to modern pictures depicting smiling Jesus and mild-mannered, freshly scrubbed Jesus, Mark’s account of Jesus’s exchange with the Syrophoenician woman does not compute. A woman begs for mercy, not for herself, but for her tormented child. Jesus responds by calling the woman a dog. Jesus seems to have gotten up on the wrong side of the bed.
|Henry Ossawa Tanner’s “Christ with the Cannanite Woman and her Daughter”|
|Alexandre Jacovleff’s “Conversation in Capri”|
|Vincent van Gogh’s “Self-Portrait with a Bandaged Ear”|
|Jacek Malczewsi’s “Reconciliation”|
Reconciling love is risky, often harrowing work. We frequently pass through suffering to arrive at forgiveness, restored trust, renewed affection, and mutual respect. But in Jesus, our way has already been paved and our destination secured.