The Responsibility of Belonging
John 4: 14-22
Soon he (Jesus) became well known throughout the surrounding country. He taught regularly in their synagogues and was praised by everyone. When he came to the village of Nazareth, his boyhood home, he went as usual to the synagogue on the Sabbath and stood up to read the Scriptures. The scroll of Isaiah the prophet was handed to him. He unrolled the scroll and found the place where this was written:
“The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, for he has anointed me to bring Good News to the poor.
He has sent me to proclaim that captives will be released, that the blind will see,
that the oppressed will be set free, and that the time of the Lord’s favour has come.”
He rolled up the scroll, handed it back to the attendant, and sat down. All eyes in the synagogue looked at him intently. Then he began to speak to them. “The Scripture you’ve just heard has been fulfilled this very day!”
Everyone spoke well of him and was amazed by the gracious words that came from his lips. “How can this be ?” they asked. “Isn’t this Joseph’s son ?”
John 4 vs 14 – 22 (New Living Translation)
There’s a moment, Lord, in every life when I have to stand up and be counted.
Too often I shrink from it, leaving it to someone else, or just let the moment go.
You’ve called me, Lord, to belong to the Kingdom of Heaven, and that must mean I have to speak up to defend it, or you, at some point.
And that means I’ll be challenged, or worse - criticised, put down, bullied.
I look to you as my example, Lord, because you found the strength to face people from all walks of life, who needed to hear the truth, and didn’t like you for saying it.
As ‘Hosannah’ turned to ‘Crucify’, you didn’t falter or give up on serving God, so I place my whole trust in you, to give me the words to say, when I need to stand up for you.
Walk with me on the difficult roads of this life, when people’s eyes are upon me, and my confidence is shaky.
Remind me that you are in the midst of every situation, and the task before me is never as great as the power behind me – the power of the Living God.
by Fiona Campbell