Daily Devotion 16 March 2021

Create a peaceful space to pause, and allow yourself to feel God’s presence alongside you, as near to you as your own breath. In following the reflection below, as a church we will draw closer to God and to one another as we grow in faith and deepen our sense of belonging to God.

Luke 4:16-21 ‘Eyes Fixed on Jesus… Jesus Fixing Them’

16 When Jesus came to Nazareth, where he had been brought up, he went to the synagogue on the sabbath day, as was his custom. He stood up to read, 17 and the scroll of the prophet Isaiah was given to him. He unrolled the scroll and found the place where it was written:

18 ‘The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he has anointed me to bring good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim release to the captives and recovery of sight to the blind,
to let the oppressed go free, 19 to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favour.’

20 And he rolled up the scroll, gave it back to the attendant, and sat down. The eyes of all in the synagogue were fixed on him. 21 Then he began to say to them, ‘Today this scripture has been fulfilled in your hearing.’

“It’ll never be the same again!” How often have I heard that lately, about the theatre, eating out, shopping streets, the Church and life in general after the pandemic?

One of my favourite programmes is Repair Shop. It’s based on the amazing work of The Weald and Downland Living Museum just outside Chichester, where people bring their old and broken treasures to be restored. There seems no limit to the tattiness and brokenness of what they bring – clocks and rusty old weather vanes, jewellery, china vases and dolls – and with amazing skill they restore them to look like new. I love the optimism of the programme that holds a message of hope that we all need. Their motto seems to be ‘nothing is so broken that we can’t repair it’. If only we could all take that attitude on board. That positive, hopeful message could have been the title of Jesus’ first sermon where he says that he came to make all things new.

Jesus came as the mender of lives – he came to mend the sight of the blind, to restore a sense of value, to help people discover their worth in the sight of God; he came to ease the burden of those who were oppressed, those with the pressures of life threatening to overwhelm them. If his first sermon had the theme, ‘Nothing is broken beyond repair,’ so did his last sermon, preached from the cross. In his own brokenness he brought repair, healing to all people. The cross symbolises the fact that God, through his incredible grace can make all things new. The good news of the Gospel is that no one is outside the love of God and no situation beyond the power of his love to heal.

Our mission as Christ’s followers is to continue his work today and become the repairers of broken things. With his Spirit we can face our future, against all the negative thinking of the doom merchants and pessimists, with confidence. In the words of Captain Tom, ‘Tomorrow will be a good day.’

Prayer:

Father God, as we listen to the words of Jesus, may we be confirmed in his belief that nothing is beyond the power of your love. Bring healing to all wounds, make whole all that is broken, speak truth to falsehood and shed light in every dark place. Give us your Spirit that we may face today and tomorrow’s challenging issues with optimism and hope. Amen.

Reflection and Prayer © 2021 Howard John.
Image freely available online.

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