Who? Me?!

Screen Shot 2015-09-23 at 8.50.20 PMIsaiah 61:1-4       1 The spirit of the Lord God is upon me, because the Lord has anointed me; he has sent me to bring good news to the oppressed, to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives, and release to the prisoners; 2 to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor, and the day of vengeance of our God; to comfort all who mourn; 3 to provide for those who mourn in Zion— to give them a garland instead of ashes, the oil of gladness instead of mourning, the mantle of praise instead of a faint spirit. They will be called oaks of righteousness, the planting of the Lord, to display his glory. 4 They shall build up the ancient ruins, they shall raise up the former devastations; they shall repair the ruined cities, the devastations of many generations.

[Scripture quotation from New Revised Standard Version Bible, copyright © 1989 National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved.]

[Image: “Creative Commons Beauty in character” by Mary Hutchison is licensed under CC BY 2.0]

A Dialogue with Isaiah 61:1-4 

Who? Me?
Sure, I’ve paid attention to the insistence
I’ve heard the call
I’ve been ordained
I’ve become one of the long robes…

But I am more comfortable
when this passage is applied
to Israel — as Suffering Servant
to Yeshua* — as Messiah
as an ideal of what could be…

When I take the words of Yeshua* seriously
when I take the words of Yeshua* purposefully
when I take the words of Yeshua* intentionally
then I begin to shudder and tremble

There is no Messiah for whom to wait
No Messiah to “fix it,” to fix me
No Messiah to make sure it comes out right.

There is only that messianic* urge that inheres in each of us
There is only that insistence
That speaks silently within
There is only an invitation that is a call to action
There is only the vocation of the wounded healer…

No, I can’t foist it off on to Yeshua*…
to “Jesus. who is the Christ,
who is the Son of God
who takes away the sins of the world.”

Those days were easier — even if they didn’t quite ring true! —
easier to palm off responsibility to the Great Wonder Worker in the sky…

But the words of Yeshua* haunt me
a specter
a presence
that won’t let me go

“The Kingdom of God* is inside you and among you;
don’t go chasing after apparitions after spooks and ghosts…
Look within!”

The only messiah that is going to act is us!
and I am a part of ‘us.’
The words of Isaiah 61:1-4 are not a prediction or prophecy;
they are an invitation to responsibility
an insistence toward moral obligation
a call to compassion…

Those words invite me
insist on me
call me.

Now, about the oppressed, broken-hearted, captive, imprisoned, mourners, faint of spirit — connect with them; help them find resources; provide them with affirmation and support; show them compassion; learn from them; let them be there for you as you try to be there for them. That is the glory the comes in the name of God. Perhaps*. That is the planting that will produce oaks of righteousness, the salvation of many generations

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

One Reply to “Who? Me?!”

Comments are closed.