Isaiah promises that the Messiah to come will come as a suffering servant. This would have been an unexpected and unwelcome announcement by those who desired a warrior-like king to redeem them from their enemies. Yet, as Jesus walked the Emmaus Road with the disciples, he likely not only identified himself as the suffering servant, he probably invited the disciples to consider how they might heed God’s call for the faithful to see themselves as freed from the powers of empires that we all might be servants of the Almighty.
Listening is redemptive; it has the power to change lives and communities. If we’re going to see positive change in the world – if we’re going to see positive change in our own community – we have to start listening.
Easter is not a call to return to the way things were. It is a reminder that in Christ’s resurrection, God’s love wins out over death. It is an invitation to see ourselves redeemed in the reflection of God’s grace, as we hear our name called by the risen Lord, that we may go forth to share the good news, that Christ the Lord is risen today!
The brokenness of humanity is often best defined in our claim to be God – to have the perfection and holiness of Christ, and to reserve the right to offer the judgement of God. Yet, we are not God, we are broken images of God’s creation in need of healing and salvation.
Saying the Jesus Prayer is not about your personal relationship with Christ. It’s about your becoming part of the Body of Christ.
At the call of the prophet in Isaiah 51, today we receive a State of the Church report, where we look back to see from where we have come, to look around and acknowledge where we are today, and to hear the vision of what God may have in store for us in the future.