Our Doug took a picture of an abandoned ore mine that ignites my imagination. The photo stirs a story in me about a hideout—an underground bunker. Have you, at least once, during the current culture non-COVID pandemic given thought to where you would hide or seriously hunker down?
Reading a report from CNN which says it is nearly impossible to determine at birth the child’s gender, I realized how often I’m thinking or saying loudly, “OMG!” as in praying. Or when hearing one of our brighter politicians say, “To call the ‘surge’ at the southern border an invasion is just the words of white supremacists.” OMG- OH, My God!
Do I look to the government and news people that my life consists of Lincoln Logs, Legos, Tinker Toys, a digital mouse, a gullible mind and an open line of credit? Who gave the government permission to spend multiple packages of $ trillions?
Frequently I wonder if I could minister to a community in that iron ore mine. But I wonder where I would shop for coffee, get natural vitamin D and fresh air. I also wonder what the optimum number is for a workable community and if I could find a USB port. How many bars would I receive on my phone and how would I publish blogs? I won’t even ask if you would help me pack for life in an iron ore world.
I’m serious about the density of my prayers with OMG! And “JESUS! Are you paying attention?!!”
Keeping in mind the approaching Good Friday 2021, I was accosted by Isaiah 61:1-2. I haven’t thought of those words for a long time—a sobering fact. To remember that Jesus used these words as His mission statement and I haven’t even thought about them is a concern to me.
“The Spirit of the Lord is on me,
because He has anointed me to preach good news to the poor.
He has sent me to proclaim freedom for the prisoners
and recovery of sight for the blind,
to release the oppressed,
to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor.”
Isaiah is said to have spoken/written these words forecasting the work of the Messiah: Preach good news, proclaim freedom, release prisoners from darkness, and proclaim favor.
How could I have neglected this? Note the demonstration and benefit of Messiah’s work (Isaiah 61):
“…to comfort all who mourn
Provide for those who grieve
Bestow a crown of beauty instead of ashes,
(Provide) the oil of gladness instead of mourning,
(Provide) a garment of praise instead of a spirit of despair.”
Listen to this list of recipients: poor, brokenhearted, captives, prisoners, you….mourning, grieving, marred, despairing, and the inadequate…the hiding.
Oh, MY God!
What an exchange: My need for His gifts—provision: comfort, beauty, gladness, praise.
Messiah shouts into the mine shaft—“I will change you, your purpose and image—how you will see yourself and how you will be seen.”
“You will be called oaks of righteousness, a planting of the LORD for the display of His splendor” (Isaiah 61:3).
Oh, My GOD!
Think of the energy released at the Cross to redeem and cleanse and change people and culture. Imagine the energy released at the Resurrection. From those fountainheads flows energy. Not just stuff to believe, but fuel—energy that can’t always be measured by Geiger counters or lightning meters.
It is what makes Friday good. and the news the Gospel of Jesus Christ.
Have a Good Friday
©2021 D. Dean Benton