This semester in my Engage Group, we have been looking at the life of John the Baptist. I have been challenged by his confidence in his calling and the extreme humility he exudes along with that confidence. John 1:6 says, “God sent John the Baptist to tell everyone about the light so that everyone might believe because of his testimony. John himself was not the light: he was only a witness to the light. The one who is the true light, who gives light to everyone, was going to come into the world.”
Luke 1:76-79 says (Zachariah speaks this about his son, John),“And you, my little son, will be called the prophet of the Most High, because you will prepare the way for the Lord. you will tell his people how to find salvation through forgiveness of their sins. Because of God’s tender mercy, the light from heaven is about to break upon us, to give light to those who sit in darkness and in the shadow of death and to guide us to the path of peace.”
As John started his ministry, he spoke with such authority and truth. People really liked him and began following him. People wanted him to be the Messiah, but he flatly denied it quoting Isaiah: “I am a voice shouting in the wilderness, prepare a straight pathway for the Lord’s coming!”
It would have been easy to start thinking highly of himself and get caught up in the fact that people thought him worthy enough to be the Messiah, but he continued to say things like, “I baptize with water, but right here in the crowd is someone you do not know, who will soon begin his ministry. I am not even worthy to be his slave” (John 1:26-27); “soon a man is coming who is far greater than I am…” (John 1:30); “I am filled with joy at his success. He must become greater and greater, and must become less and less” (John 3:29).
I always thought of John the Baptist as someone who had a very special calling from God. But as I looked at his life, I realized that my calling is no different from his… prepare the way for the Lord, tell his people how to find salvation through the forgiveness of their sins, and be a light that reflects Jesus. He just did it with great passion and obedience. Lord, give us great passion and obedience as we prepare the way for you in the hearts of our friends and family.
~ Kati Williams