Advent Meditation Dec 17 2013
Read Luke 4:20-29
Imagine what the people in the synagogue must have thought when Jesus finished reading from Isaiah 61 and said, “Today this scripture has been fulfilled in your hearing.”
First, he was claiming to be a prophet — but wasn’t he also saying that they, the good Jews listening to him, were poor, captive, blind, oppressed, and in need of hearing the good news? After all, Jesus was proclaiming “the year of the Lord’s favor” directly to them! They could not receive the Lord’s favor without also admitting to being poor, captive, blind, and oppressed!
James Carroll’s column concludes by saying,
“Is it possible that our frantic holiday activity, like our year-end charitable gestures… is our way of deflecting the real message? Consider… our own implicitly desperate proving — with new J. Crew sweaters and parkas from L.L. Bean — that we ourselves are not nobodies. The simple, sweet Christmas story is a searing judgment on everything we are doing. If we miss the call to revolution in that stable, that manger, alas, we also miss the good news that such a revolution… is still possible.”
Meditation: Spend time on each of these questions:
- In what ways am I poor?
- To what am I captive instead of living joyfully in God’s love?
- What vision am I too blind to see?
- What is oppressing me that I have failed to allow God to free me from?
Then meditate on the Good News: God’s favor is with you!