December 18, 2017
Posted: December 18, 2017
A Devotion for Your Day
by Katie Strand
Since many have undertaken to set down an orderly account of the events that have been fulfilled among us, just as they were handed on to us by those who from the beginning were eyewitnesses and servants of the word, I too decided, after investigating everything carefully from the very first, to write an orderly account for you, most excellent Theophilus, so that you may know the truth concerning the things about which you have been instructed.
If so many people had already recorded the story of Jesus, as Luke writes in his introduction, why do you suppose he felt the need to add yet another version? Why, for that matter, do we have four Gospel accounts in our Bible? Wouldn't it be more to-the-point (and simpler) if someone just put all the important stuff into one big one?
What was true for Luke, the Gospel writer, is still true for us, the Gospel readers; more perspectives create a fuller and truer picture of Jesus.
Despite its "orderly" outcome, I like to imagine Luke's process to be messy, or at least meandering. I'm sure he sought out scholarly religious types, but perhaps "investigating everything" also involved talking with Samaritans, consulting women, giving face-time to children, and interviewing outsiders - all of whom would contribute an important facet to Luke's dynamic, radically compassionate and inclusive Savior.
Jade, a high school student who attended "God's Mosaic: Diversity as Good News" theological institute last summer, learned that "we can't interpret the Bible on our own, because everyone comes from different backgrounds, and everyone has a different life," which gives them unique insights into characters and stories. And "hearing all of them is the best way to really understand what the Bible is saying."
Luke's Gospel paints a compelling picture of Jesus and his love - a picture which becomes even more vibrant, deep, and lively when we hear directly from someone who sees it differently from us. Or when we listen today to how the despised were loved, how the trivialized felt valued, how the voiceless were heard, how the disenfranchised were brought into community. We need these different perspectives, and we need yours, to add to the big and growing story of God's bold and humble, flesh-and-blood love for the world.
Dear Jesus, give us opportunities to regard you from new perspectives, so that we might see you more fully. Amen.
Katie Strand serves as Youth Director, working with high school students.
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