November 18, 2015

Read Luke 4:16-30
When I was younger, I found refuge at my grandmother’s house.  It was my “happy place”— somewhere I longed to spend days surrounded by love.  My love for her town, people, and church remains today.  While I am certain evil things happened in her town, I felt it was a safe haven.  As a place where my parents once lived and I was born, it would be my “second hometown,” a place that still warms my heart when visiting.
Imagine how Jesus must have felt when he was recognized by his “hometown friends” as Joseph’s son, yet they turned against him. The friends were astonished at how well Jesus spoke.  Though he read the scroll proclaiming God’s Spirit on Him and explaining God’s plan, the friends were astonished at how well Jesus spoke.  When Jesus pointed out that no prophet was welcomed in his own hometown, the friends became angry. Citing several examples of prophets’ work in other cities, Jesus was eventually driven out of town with orders to be thrown down a cliff.  Ultimately, He escaped.  
Jesus was sent to save the very people who wanted Him killed for speaking truth.  How difficult it must have been to have friends turn against Him—especially since He was chosen to preach the message of good news to them.  Does this seem all too familiar?  Those Jesus knew best were the ones turning Him away. Jesus came to set us free.  Is He welcomed in your hometown?