To bring good news to the poor (Luke 4:18)
The prophet Amos criticized traders who practiced deceit and exploited the poor. God, who sides with the victims of injustice, will not forget such wrongdoing. In a globalized world, such marginalization, exploitation and injustice is rampant. The gap between rich and poor is becoming wider. Economic demands become the deciding factor in our relationships and the demands of justice are more and more pushed to the side-lines. Christians are called to challenge the prevailing attitudes and to work for justice.
I’ll believe it when I see it!
I’ve heard it all before!
‘Things can only get better’
‘Audacity of hope’
Promises of something new!
They are just bus-slogans when the poor remain poor,
the vulnerable abused and no-one speaks out!
Do you think I can jump up and dance
when my hands and feet are made heavy with the anger from broken promises?
And so I stare at you, because to stare is all I can do.
if ‘good news’ means
rising up against power,
overturning the tables down the road in the big city,
walking, talking and eating with people like us,
going the whole way with us,
not departing when things get too tough,
even when the suffering becomes too great to endure,
this would truly be something new.
It would be good news fulfilled.
Then I could be tempted to trust one more time.
God, the bringer of good news,
forgive our lust for power
and free us from the temptation to oppress others.
Instil in us the determination
to see your good news made real in us and those around us,
as we share in the mission of your Son Jesus
to fulfil your promise of freedom from poverty and oppression.
We pray in his name. Amen.
Where do you see deceit and false promises?
Who are the poor and the powerful in your community?
What can we do to bring the good news of the gospel to both the powerful and the poor?
Go and Do
The World Economic Forum meets from 22nd – 25th January 2019 in Davos, coinciding with the Week of Prayer for Christian Unity. This moment highlights the extreme disunity and inequality across the world. 42 people own the same wealth as the poorest 50 percent (Oxfam 2018).
Take time this week to work together for a world where there is unity not just between Christians but where we as human beings can flourish together. Renew your commitment to trade that is fair and ethical and to continue to campaign for taxes to be paid. Visit Go and Do for more information.
(Unlike those Amos condemned, these Victorian scales are accurate and still in use today.) MMB.