1He left that place and came to his home town, and his disciples followed him. 2On the sabbath he began to teach in the synagogue, and many who heard him were astounded. They said, “Where did this man get all this? What is this wisdom that has been given to him? What deeds of power are being done by his hands! 3Is not this the carpenter, the son of Mary and brother of James and Joses and Judas and Simon, and are not his sisters here with us?” And they took offence at him. 4Then Jesus said to them, “Prophets are not without honor, except in their home town, and among their own kin, and in their own house.” 5And he could do no deed of power there, except that he laid his hands on a few sick people and cured them. 6And he was amazed at their unbelief.
We had a guest preacher in my home church. Now I knew this man’s family, after all they were a well known name in my home town. In his sermon, he gave his testimony, about growing up in trouble (and we knew that) and coming to that “Jesus Moment” when he accepted the Lord. Then he heard the call to ministry. In his prayer, he said “Lord, I’ll go anywhere but Phoenixville (both his and my home town). Send me somewhere else.” Well, you probably guessed what happened. He was sent home to preach the good news.
I think about this passage of scripture where Jesus comes into his home town and teaches and at first, they are all amazed at both his teaching and healing. But then someone asks, “Is not this the carpenter…?”
So often we think we know someone based on their ancestry, or their past and miss what God is doing with them. The guest preacher was called to run a men’s homeless shelter in his town, something that was greatly needed. He met some resistance, just as Jesus did, but persevered and honored his call.
Sometimes we are called to difficult places where people will look down on us due to our family, our upbringing, even our own past. Yet with Jesus, we can live a new life and pass that on to others.
This week, think of someone that might have a reputation, pray for them and let God do something incredible.