The theme of this final week of Lent readings is ‘Changing’. Change is part of the Christian’s life, for this life is about ongoing transformation into the image of Christ (Rom 8:29, 2 Cor 3:17-18). But change is rarely enthusiastically embraced by us all or even noticed, for the most part, once we reach adulthood.
Today’s reading (Isaiah 42:1-9) is part of the ‘Servant Songs’ in that book, showing us the nature of God’s Messiah. This servant will spurn no one but will ‘faithfully bring forth justice.’ Gentleness and compassion are seen in this servant, a refusal to countenance bullying or manipulative control. We see here that change can only come as we feel loved and secure. Power, status, material objects and worldly success are not the pathways to the kind of change God is looking to bring about in our lives, but the work of peace and justice which Christ epitomises will effect long-lasting change in our lives and from there in our communities.