Luke 4:21-30 (NRSV)
Verse 21Then he began to say to them, "Today this scripture has been fulfilled in your hearing." Verse 22All spoke well of him and were amazed at the gracious words that came from his mouth. They said, "Is not this Joseph's son?" Verse 23He said to them, "Doubtless you will quote to me this proverb, 'Doctor, cure yourself!' And you will say, 'Do here also in your hometown the things that we have heard you did at Capernaum.'" Verse 24And he said, "Truly I tell you, no prophet is accepted in the prophet's hometown. Verse 25But the truth is, there were many widows in Israel in the time of Elijah, when the heaven was shut up three years and six months, and there was a severe famine over all the land; Verse 26yet Elijah was sent to none of them except to a widow at Zarephath in Sidon. Verse 27There were also many lepers in Israel in the time of the prophet Elisha, and none of them was cleansed except Naaman the Syrian." Verse 28When they heard this, all in the synagogue were filled with rage. Verse 29They got up, drove him out of the town, and led him to the brow of the hill on which their town was built, so that they might hurl him off the cliff. Verse 30But he passed through the midst of them and went on his way.
A physician hero of mine, Dr. Paul Farmer, once said, "The idea that some lives matter less is the root of all that is wrong with the world." For Farmer, this led to the formation of a nonprofit called Partners in Health, with hospitals in Haiti, Rwanda, and other desperate places around the globe. For Jesus, healing was done wherever it was needed, without favoritism. For Farmer, bringing healing to those without access is a worthy mission, a way to live out his belief that the poor should have the same recourse to medicine that the wealthy have.
When we encounter God in Jesus, the Savior of the world, how do we react to his radical inclusivity? With anxiety that we may not get preferential treatment? Or can we find the humility Christ himself displayed, to get on board with the mission to reach the least and the lost and share the good news of God's love for all people?
Healing Lord, help us to feel so secure in your love and salvation that we can be willing participants in the mission to share that love and grace with the whole world. In the name of Christ. Amen.