Jesus comes home…to us!
Last Sunday, we had a strange Gospel reading. It told the story of Jesus’ return to his home town. You would have thought they would have been delighted, ‘Local boy makes good!’ and at first it seems they were, but then they turned on him. They had heard about his teaching and miracles and they wondered and questioned where he got his power. Right question! Well, the obvious answer was from God. Oh dear, that made them uncomfortable. How could someone that they knew well- why he was a local traddie, they knew his Mum…and all his rellies- reveal God to them? And they rejected him, closed their hearts to him.
What they did reveals something about how we humans want to do religion. We want God to be ‘special’ (which God is) but we can make God special by removing him from our ordinary daily life. We can do this by excessive religious practices that neglect the people around us. Or we can do it by leaving religion for the special occasions when we go to church, e.g. Christmas, First Communion. Is that what our Christian faith is about? With the coming of God in human flesh, God tells us very clearly, “I don’t want to be out there, something special. I want to be here, now, in the midst of your ordinary life, transforming from within.” In this coming week, imagine God coming to you as a local traddie to do some maintenance. He sees your situation and offers reassurance and advice – what could he say that you need?
Loving God, with the coming of Jesus you showed how much you want to be part of lives. Show me how I keep you remote from my life. Heal my heart of its fear and embarrassment and let me be open to your Spirit’s life and grace. We ask this in Jesus’ name confident that you will hear us.