Friday, March 19, 2010

Sight For the Blind

“. . . and recovery of sight for the blind.” Luke 4:18c (NIV)

Here again Jesus could have meant more than then physically blind. In our 21st Century world, we seem to have a lot of spiritually blinded people. We also notice persons who are blinded by the glitz of the world. Some people get sidetracked in their walk with Jesus by some Christian-sounding groups

I have heard certain people described by others as “having a blind spot”. Some parents have fallen in this category because they have a relationship with someone and think that other person can’t do anything wrong. Some times this blind spot causes a person to become involved in activities that are dangerous to themselves and to others.

Did Jesus come to give these sight?

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Freedom for Prisoners

“He has sent me to proclaim freedom for the prisoners.” Luke 4:18b (NIV)

Are we to take this phrase as Jesus speaking words of independence to those men and women behind bars? He could mean this. I believe He means more, His message could focus on emotional, spiritual, and mental freedom, not simply the condition of a person having served his or her time behind physical bars and being released.

Could the Master also call those held in bondage to certain self-destructive habits prisoners? If a person becomes addicted to a substance, he or she has allowed that ‘stuff’ to take them over-physically, mentally and emotionally. It is horrific to see someone attached to things that can take their life.

What about victims of abuse? Wouldn’t we call them prisoners? Friends of mine have a daughter who, in order to function, has to take seizure medication. When the daughter was married, I heard she had a spell every time she and her husband came to visit. After she moved back home, she confessed that she hadn’t been taking her meds. It seemed they needed the money for ‘other things’ but it wasn’t her decision. It was the husband’s. Was my friend’s daughter a prisoner?

Didn’t Jesus came to help them find a better way to live?

Monday, March 15, 2010

Good News to the Poor

“The Sprit of the Lord is upon me

because he has anointed me to preach

good news to the poor.”

Luke 4:18a (NIV)

Who are the poor in our 21st Century world? We live in an economically depressed town-a corporation closed one of it’s larger parts plant in the 1990’s. Then another corporate decision closed it’s other division in, I believe, 2006. These two divisions employed a large percentage of our area’s population.

We hear of people who have no or inadequate health insurance. Would Jesus consider them poor? I remember a friend sharing with me that her mother-at that time, a fairly recent widow-had to use the majority of her Social Security to purchase her medication. This lady had less than $15.00 each month to use for food, utilities, etc. Do we think about this condition as being impoverished?

We hear of people losing their homes because they are out of work. People live in substandard housing because they can’t find anything within their means. Back in the early summer the local newspaper ran a story about a man being injured in a fight at what seemed to be a campsite set up by some homeless people.

God loves the poor, the ones without means and the homeless as much as he loves you and me.

Fear, Courage: God Is With Us  Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be frightened, and do not be dismayed, for the LORD ...