January 31, 2022
One of our readings this week comes from the gospel of Luke. We hear how Joseph’s son has grown up. The wee boy that had sat at his father's feet in the carpentry shop hearing the worries of farmers as they waited for their ploughs to be fixed or the stories of husbands getting chairs mended, or the secrets shared as people worried over prices and priorities. That wee boy, whose craftsmanship as a carpenter but also as a listener had helped to sustain life in the village, was now a man in his own right, and when he spoke in the synagogue, Luke writes how well all spoke of him and how amazed they were at the gracious words he spoke. Here was someone who had heard and understood the concerns and complaints, the doubts and despairs of customers, who had smiled at their old jokes and joined in their celebrations and now was able to understand scripture not as a dry text of rules, but as real hope and light in the lives of what we might call ‘ordinary' people.
He was one of their own, welcomed and celebrated and given thanks for. If only Jesus had left it there, if he had been content to promise and celebrate but had he done that, the job would only have been half finished.