Out in the Desert

John 1:19-28

John 1:20 “He did not fail to confess, but confessed freely, I am not the Christ.”

John could be thought of as an oddball, maybe at times a pain, because he didn’t follow the norms.  Who the heck wears unprocessed camel hair and eats locusts and wild honey these days… come on we’re civilized for GOD’s sake!  Who does John think he is… Jesus the Christ?  Does he think he is better than us?

Have you ever done that? Called someone a “miss goody two shoes” or asked someone if they thought they were better than you?  Have you had it the opposite way?  Have people called you the party pooper or taunt you with… What you’re too good to get drunk or get high like the rest of us.  Everyone does it, it’s just a one night fling, you couldn’t help yourself.

When pushed by those questioning John with “What do you say about yourself?” John replies John 1:23, “I am the voice of one calling in the desert, Make straight the paths for the Lord.”

It is a desert out there, especially if you are trying to stay true to GOD.  Everyone lies; politicians, news shows, you can’t watch an advertisement that doesn’t oversell and underperform.  Who is out there to help and support you?  GOD is!  He may be hard to see, or feel, or touch at times, but GOD is out there and in there and all around you.  He is with you in all you do and whether you are hurting yourself or others or being hurt by others… GOD IS WITH YOU!

John says in John 1:26-27, “but among you stands one you do not know.  He is the one who comes after me, the thongs of whose sandals I am not worthy to untie.”

There is evil and there is good.  The world (the wilderness) will tell you, no convince you that if others are doing it… it is ok for you to do also.

FIRST, Remember!  God loves you whichever you choose, because GOD doesn’t love you if you change, GOD loves you so you can change.  No guilt, no fear, no worry… just LOVE!

SECOND,  If you want to make sure that what you are doing is on the path GOD wants then read Matthew 22:37-40  “Love the Lord your GOD with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.  This is the first and the greatest commandment.  And the second is like it: Love your neighbor as yourself.  All the law and the prophets hang on these two commandments.”  And if you want to know what GOD sees as a good neighbor then read Matthew 25:37-40 where verse 40 says “I tell you the truth, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers of mine you did for me.”

Precious Father, Loving God, Holy Spirit, We pray that while we know that we are not “the Christ”, help us to know and to be Christ in the world… to every man, woman, and child on and in this world.  AMEN!

Jim Dietvorst

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