1 In those days John the Baptist came preaching in the wilderness of Judea, 2 and saying, “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand!” 3 For this is he who was spoken of by the prophet Isaiah, saying:
“The voice of one crying in the wilderness:
‘Prepare the way of the Lord;
Make His paths straight.’ ”
Have you ever wondered what God was doing? In the middle of an event that really didn’t make sense to you, have you ever looked to heaven and said, “God, I know you are at work, but what in the world is all of this about?” As we look briefly at the life of John the Baptist we find one of those people whose short life was designed by God for a specific purpose. John was filled with the Holy Spirit from his mother’s womb. When Mary, with Jesus in her womb came to see Elizabeth, with John in her womb, the babe in Elizabeth’s womb moved in a way that is described in the King James as “leaped in the womb.”
God had a specific purpose for John and that was to prepare the nation for the teaching and life of Jesus. John’s public ministry was not very long and then John was arrested. After he was arrested John was beheaded after a lustful dance by the daughter of Herodius. Do you suppose John’s question to Jesus about whether He was the one or not came from a heart questioning the working of God?
Yes, God had a specific purpose for John’s life and yes, John fulfilled that purpose. Jesus called John the greatest prophet that ever lived. Though his life and ministry was cut short, John did what God prepared him for. What has God prepare you for? What conversation, what relationship, what ministry, has God prepared you for, set you into and used you to accomplish His purpose? There are people who need us day after day. Are we prepared to be used of God to reach into their hearts and lives? Do we always recognize that God has prepared the situation? Like John, I am afraid we do not always recognize those moments but God does. Be ready today for God to use you in a prepared situation to accomplish His work and to communicate His message as His messenger before His face.
Happy New Year, my friends. As I related to my sons and daughter and daughters-in-law, commit to walking with God this year; commit to serving His kingdom this year. Find out all that God has for you and do it. Live in an expectation that God wants to be with you and you with Him. Be ever looking for opportunities to serve God through serving others for His sake and with His love. Make 2018 a continuation of your Christian life.
Pray for a friend named Dave. He had knee replacement surgery and somehow a nerve to his foot was negatively affected. The constant pain in his foot is keeping him from good sleep and is not going away. Pray for someone to be able to bring healing to Dave’s foot pain.
Have a great day in the Lord,