Don't Miss the Parade

Dear Brothers and Sisters,

This time of year I use to always try to convince my parents we should have gotten tickets to the Rose Bowl Parade. It was always my favorite parade. Imagine all those flowers they use, all the brilliant colors. But my Mom would always say,  "I have heard small children cannot see anything looking up into that crowd. All those people... it will be so congested and miserable. David you can see it better on TV.” You know as time went on and I get older I think she may have been right? As a small child standing in that mass of humanity, trying to peer out around all the larger bodies, I would have potentially missed the whole deal.

 

When John the Baptist comes on the scene in Luke 3:1-6 he is preparing the way so that others may see what is on the way. “….Prepare the way of the Lord, make a path straight. Every valley shall be filled and every mountain and hill made low, and the crooked shall be made straight, and the rough made ways made smooth; and all flesh shall see the salvation of God.” John the Baptist has come to make sure no one misses the parade.

“Prepare the way of the Lord!” Wonderful, but did you hear how God intends to do God's part and we ours? It sounds a bit like the bulldozer approach. The low places will be filled in –“Low self esteem ? Give it up, you are worth it!” "Cut down the high places.” “Exaggerated opinion of yourself. Forget it face the truth about yourself.” “Doing wrong, crooked things? Stop it and I mean now!” You are being called to "repentance"  (Luke 3:8).

Repentance means to turn toward God and see God with clarity. To repent is to come to your senses. True repentance spends less time looking at the past and saying, "I am sorry,” and more time looking at the future and saying “WOW!” Repentance is recognizing what is trash in our lives and what really matters. Sometimes we have to have God's help with this.

See you on Sunday.

Still in one peace,

David J. Jensen

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