“Jesus returned to Galilee powerful in the Spirit. News that he was back spread through the countryside. He taught in their meeting places to everyone’s acclaim and pleasure.
He came to Nazareth where he had been reared. As he always did on the Sabbath, he went to the meeting place. When he stood up to read, he was handed the scroll of the prophet Isaiah. Unrolling the scroll, he found the place where it was written,
The Spirit of the LORD is upon Me,
Because He has anointed Me
To preach the gospel to the poor;
He has sent Me to heal the brokenhearted,
To proclaim liberty to the captives
And recovery of sight to the blind,
To set at liberty those who are oppressed;
To proclaim the acceptable year of the LORD.
Then He closed the book, and gave it back to the attendant and sat down. And the eyes of all who were in the synagogue were fixed on Him. And He began to say to them, “Today this Scripture is fulfilled in your hearing.” Luke 4:14-24
I’ve been sitting with these words for a few days now. Frankly, they overwhelm me.
Our God didn’t come to us for what we could do for Him.
He came to us for what He could do for us.
Do you see the absolutely outrageous upside down logic in this?
Lyrics from John Mark McMillan come to mind — “If grace is an ocean, we’re all sinking…”
The Creator sent His Word — His heart — in the flesh. This was a hands-on mercy mission to change us from the inside out. To change our forever. This was a King who did not come to His people to be lauded, to exercise power, to have it all.
This was the King rejected in order to include us.
He became poor to make us rich.
He was despised so that we’d know love.
He was hurt to heal us.
He was bound to set us free.
He died to give us life.
Adam ushered in the broken era. Pain, death, sorrow, bondage.
Jesus ushered in the era of the Kingdom of God. Liberty. Vision. Healing. Restoration. Provision. Salvation. Redemption.
It was no secret, under-cover, keep-it-quiet mission. The Savior entered the world to save. He came to turn everything we thought was impossible into reality. He came to demolish the foundations of every lie we believed.
He came so that we could see Love for ourselves.
If you’re discourged, if you’re hurt, if you feel over or underwhelmed, if you’re caught up in things you can’t get yourself out of, if you can’t quite see which direction is the right one — take another look at Love. Take another look at His mission. We walk in His victory and it is complete.
His good news is for you. His love is for you.
Do not be discouraged. The same Jesus that stood up with authority and revealed His intentions to rescue His people is the same Jesus loving you right now. Do not be afraid. The Savior is with you. The King of all Kings knows your name.
He is still Emmanuel, God with us. And He still comes to our rescue.