Second Sunday in Advent: A Message of Hope and Healing

Second Sunday in Advent: A Message of Hope and Healing
Clarkston United Methodist Church's Bridges Out of Poverty training

Isaiah 11.1-10

It was a time of wars and destruction. The Assyrian Empire was rising to become a superpower. It was on its way to conquering all territories to its west. By the time of the prophet Isaiah, the Northern Kingdom of Israel was seeing its alliance with Syria deteriorate, and the Assyrian troops were already in its backyard… and the Southern Kingdom of Judah would soon be the next target. The tensions were high, and the people feared as they came to realize that these powers were greater than themselves. The world was broken, wrecked, destroyed. Yet, in the midst of all that devastation, Isaiah brings a message of hope, of healing of all things. With a poetic voice, the prophet paints the image of a new reality that was not even imaginable. A new Spirit-led “ruler,” from the defeated branch of Jesse, would rise, and be risen, would harmonize all creation through his righteousness and faithfulness, in love and through love.

Many centuries passed until the second half of 20th century… It was a small village, near the sea. Its bay made it a strategic point for the Colombian paramilitaries to build one of their bases. At the entrance to the village, there was a big rock, a symbol of power to some and of fear to others. At this rock, many people, including the innocent, lost their lives. Today, that rock is still there.

Yet, just a couple of yards from there is a small, beautiful building and a hut. It is a medical clinic and a church, a growing branch, blooming hope into this devastated community. What was once a place of death is now a place of life! It is where mothers can receive their prenatal care and deliver their babies in safety; where children can get a nutritious meal; where enemies become friends; where displaced people can find a family. It is a place where people have come together to be a community. It is place where a community has worked together to transform the brokenness of the world into a place more like the Kin-dom of God. And it is a possible reality, also to you and to me, right here and right now. May God´s Kin(dom) come!

Prayer: Healing God, in this world of brokenness, may I be used by You to make visible the signs of Your Kin-dom here and now. Give me the wisdom and the power to do Your will. Amen.

Rev. Andrea Reily Rocha Soares is Regional Missionary in Latin America.

Posted or updated: 12/4/2016 11:00:00 PM

Advent Candles

Give Thanks. Give Now.

Mission Focus:

Pakistan: Association of Women Awareness and Rural Empowerment: Human rights awareness for brick makers and farm workers.

Testimony for December 4-10:

Thanks to the support of the faith community, each Christmas season, children in our centers receive a special gift chosen just for them. Joy and excitement fill the room as each child receives their gift. Every now and then, you notice a child who pauses – perhaps to reflect upon the blessedness of the holy season. -Dave Howery, InterServ-St. Joseph, Mo.

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