“The Spirit of the Lord (the Bird on the shoulder!) is upon me, because he has anointed me
- to bring glad tidings to the poor.
He has sent me
- to proclaim liberty to captives
- and recovery of sight to the blind,
- to let the oppressed go free, and
- to proclaim a year acceptable to the Lord.”
Rolling up the scroll, he handed it back to the attendant and sat down, and the eyes of all in the synagogue looked intently at him. He said to them, “TODAY, this Scripture passage is fulfilled in your hearing.”
Thoughts for the week:
Jesus knew his mission, his purpose, his calling. What is ours? Talk to him. Ask him to lead, guide and direct (especially if there’s been some change or rupture in life recently that causes us to wonder what we’re gonna do or what our calling or purpose is…)
“Theophilus,” in Greek, means “lover of God.” This SS passage above is written NOT to some guy named Theo, but to US! To all of us 2000 years later as Theophili, “lovers of God.” As baptized persons in the Spirit, we, too are anointed. What’s our mission! What’s our calling! What’s our purpose:
- bring glad tidings to the poor: who do we know that is lonely, isolated, depressed? Who needs a call, a text, an email…..better yet, a visit, a kind word, a note or thoughtful small gesture? Do it!
- proclaim liberty to captives: who do we know who’s wrestling with addiction? … held captive by a destructive power greater than them? How can we be an accompanying, gentle yet strong, loving but firm voice helping them to help themselves get free…to be liberated from whatever’s holding them captive by helping them get to know a power greater than themselves (God) that can restore them? ….even if we know we’re gonna meet with resistance…
- recovery of sight to the blind: who do we know that’s going down the wrong road in life? How can we, from our own experience of living life, help them to “see” they’re goin down the toilet? That they’re off course? They’re hangin with the wrong crew? They’re not seeing the reality of the situation? How can we share our vision? Our “in-sight?”
- let the oppressed go free: who has been in the” penalty box” for past transgressions or mistakes big or small for days (with the silent treatment), months or years (with passive aggressive punishing behavior)…”I’ll forgive but I’ll never forget…” Who do we need to “set free” through forgiveness? Maybe it’s us first who need the help to be “set free” to become vulnerable enough to forgive. Maybe we oppress others because we’re oppressed, repressed or suppressed ourselves. (if too tough, call on the Bird! Call on the Spirit for help!)
- proclaim a year acceptable to the Lord: who in our midst needs to be reminded that they are acceptable to God….as they are….imperfect but working toward getting back on track? Who do you or I know who needs to be reminded of their goodness, beauty, dignity or worth? Who needs to be reassured that they are acceptable, not perfect, but acceptable in the Lord’s eyes as they do the best they can with what they have?
Jesus was anointed by the Spirit. We, too, are anointed by that same Spirit. Jesus knew his mission, purpose and calling. Do we know ours? Let’s try one of these TODAY, for this Scripture passage has been fulfilled in our midst!