God of the poor

One of the real joys of my life is being exposed to the thoughts and meditations of my colleagues. The people I work with are wonderful. They are thoughtful, intelligent and sincere. When we gather for conferences or meetings there is often a time for someone from the group to share their journey, their thoughts, their insight from life and Scripture.

Recently Everett, who is getting ready to retire, shared and used this song with us. He spoke about Isaiah’s words from Isaiah 61 and here are the beginning verses:

The Spirit of the Sovereign Lord is on me,
    because the Lord has anointed me
    to proclaim good news to the poor.
He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted,
    to proclaim freedom for the captives
    and release from darkness for the prisoners,a]”>[a]
to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor
    and the day of vengeance of our God,
to comfort all who mourn,
    and provide for those who grieve in Zion—
to bestow on them a crown of beauty
    instead of ashes,
the oil of joy
    instead of mourning,
and a garment of praise
    instead of a spirit of despair.
They will be called oaks of righteousness,
    a planting of the Lord
    for the display of his splendor.

Now, these are words to rejoice, for many of us are broken, by life, by circumstance, by relationships. No one it would seem gets out of life unscathed. We share the human trait of sin – sinfulness – and the consequences of this.

Everett talked about the ancient art of Kintsugi – taking broken pottery and putting it together using gold – the result if of course beautiful. From broke, some might say only good to be thrown away, to a wonderful art that is admired!

bowl-1

Maybe you identify – you feel rather broken. The good news is that there is an answer in Jesus. He’s the gold, he’s the potter, he’s the artist, he’s the answer.

He is the one who offers forgiveness for our sin, for our failures. And the forgiven are the freed.  The forgiven are the family of God. The forgiven are those great oaks of righteousness.

Isaiah goes on:

I delight greatly in the Lord;
    my soul rejoices in my God.
For he has clothed me with garments of salvation
    and arrayed me in a robe of his righteousness,

Rejoice and listen to Graham Kendrick’s wonderful song!

 

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