Date: June 23, 2019
In our reading this morning Luke gives us a story of demons. What catches my attention in this story is the man hidden in the centre of the story, the man possessed by all those demons. He is somebody we all have seen, somebody we may know. And he’s somebody who asks us to look at ourselves.
He’s a man who has lost himself. He had been “a man of the city” known to his neighbours, a member of the community. But now he lives in death, “among the tombs” Luke says, out beyond the city walls. He has nothing, no home, no clothes, no name anymore. He has no voice. He is lost to himself and shattered into unrecognizable pieces of his former humanity. He is at the mercy of powers beyond his control, driven to the brink of existence.
Then Jesus comes along and gives the man an identity again, or tries to, and the healing begins. Jesus reaches across the isolation and separation so characteristic of illness and calms the storms in this man, speaking to him and treating him like a human being.
How do we respond to the possibility of healing in our lives, our communities: do we choose to hold fast to the old ways or do we step forward into liberation?