Monday, November 30, 2015

#AdventWord #Proclaim

Luke 4:18-19
‘The Spirit of the Lord is upon me,
   because he has anointed me
     to bring good news to the poor.
He has sent me to proclaim release to the captives
   and recovery of sight to the blind,
     to let the oppressed go free,
to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor.’

When I saw today's word was "proclaim," Jesus' words in the Temple (he's reading from Isaiah) came to me. Walking to lunch today, I looked at this scene I see everyday.

That red building in my picture is a jail. That bridge and the bridge I'm stood on as I took this photo, give shelter to only a few of Houston's poorest of the poor. Right here, next door to where I work are captives and poor people.

This was not a revelation. I've been conscious of this for the 4+ years I've worked downtown.

Something that occurred to me, however, was how Jesus/Isaiah say they are anointed to speak to the captives and the poor. It occurs to me that when I write or talk about systematic oppression, I'm talking to the people who are the oppressors (someone much like me, if I'm to admit to the uncomfortable reality) more than to the oppressed.

And then I realized I have no idea what to say to captives. My interactions with the poor are brief, hasty even.

This takes some wind out of my sails.

This is worth thinking on, praying about.

I'm also reminded of my numbness on September 1, 2001. I remember writing something like, "It's another terrible thing that has happened far away. I don't know how to help someone next door."

Recalling yesterday's word, there's more waking up to be done. 

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