SCRIPTURE: LUKE 2:21 & Isaiah 7:14
After eight days had passed, it was time to circumcise the child; and he was called Jesus, the name given by the angel before he was conceived in the womb.
A passage from the Prophet Isaiah: Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign. Look, the young woman is with child and shall bear a son, and shall name him Immanuel.
REFLECTION by The Rev. Mary Hudak
Naming is often what gives life and truth to all things created. Naming of emotions, love and fear, brings them to life. Then and only then can we begin to accept and transform them into something of meaning and grace. Yes, even fear has ability to be transformed into courage. Love, when named, can be accepted and felt. The names we give Jesus throughout the Gospels helps us recognize the magnitude of the person who walks with us through all the experiences of life.
As the Messiah, Jesus brings rescue. The people of Israel were looking for someone to rescue them from their oppression. As the Son of God, Jesus comes to share in our humanity so that we can name and discover our own divinity. As the teacher, Jesus not only teaches but also discovers more intimately the human condition. As wisdom, Jesus offers a new way to be that helps justice transform from an ideal into small realities in the world. Jesus is called king and we know him as the King of kings. He is the ruler of the world and beyond. That is good news, because then we don’t have to be and the world then can be made new in the image of the kingdom of heaven. Jesus is the Word in which all things came into being.
What is your name and what are you called into becoming because of it? What needs naming in your life so it can be transformed into something powerful and right with God? What Word in your life needs to spoken out loud so the power of it can be shared with others who need it?
God, with words you called all creation into being. By calling us into covenant with you, we are named “a child of God.” Help us recognize within ourselves the person that is called Your beloved child. Amen.
Blessings of God, the Creator of the Universe, be with you and all you love. Amen.