Friday, September 23, 2016

With Authority and Power

Jesus went down to Capernaum, a city in Galilee, and was teaching them on the sabbath. They were astounded at his teaching, because he spoke with authority. In the synagogue there was a man who had the spirit of an unclean demon, and he cried out with a loud voice, “Let us alone! What have you to do with us, Jesus of Nazareth? Have you come to destroy us? I know who you are, the Holy One of God.” But Jesus rebuked him, saying, “Be silent, and come out of him!” When the demon had thrown him down before them, he came out of him without having done him any harm. They were all amazed and kept saying to one another, “What kind of utterance is this? For with authority and power he commands the unclean spirits, and out they come!” And a report about him began to reach every place in the region. Luke 4:31-37 

Yesterday I was looking at the movies that are out in the theaters. There was a plethora of horror movies, which seems to happen this time of year. As we get close to Halloween, we ache to be terrified, as if there is cleansing, some healing these scary movies provide. We like it best when they are based on true stories, of people beset with horrible houses, horrible children and horrible communities. The problem is, when people are truly beset by unexplained things, we run in terror the other way and are powerless to help.

Jesus was not afraid of the man in the synagogue, nor did he run the other way. He brought healing and freedom to the man, ridding him of the pain and damage that bound him. They people who witnesses this were frightened and amazed, both wonderfully excited and ready to run. In the face of God's loving presence, we often find ourselves feeling this way.  We are invited today to be fearless in the face of things we cannot explain and to call on the ultimate authority and power, the love of God which is ever present and unending. In the face of the worst evil, social and personal, we can count on the ability of God to conquer even the worst that comes at us.

Today I ask God to help me remember to seek God's love and power and not rely solely on my own. May we remember that there is much in our daily lives we cannot conquer alone, and may we completely rely on the power of God's love to conquer that which seems impossible and unchangeable.

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