On the bank of the Jordan River, two cousins met face to face. Jesus had traveled from Galilee for this purpose, to be baptized by John. To John’s protest, Jesus answered,
“It is fitting for us to fulfill all righteousness.”
The two men waded into the Jordan, and John buried Jesus beneath the water and raised him back up to a new season of life. This was not a cleansing, but a coronation. The veil of clouds parted, and the heavens opened. Through the streaming sunlight the Spirit descended and God spoke.
God, who had been silent for centuries, spoke.
Jesus invited John to partner with him. “It is fitting for us to fulfill all righteousness.” John accepted the invitation and received the honor of partnering with God to inaugurate the season of Jesus’ earthly ministry.
When Jesus invites you to partner with him for a specific assignment, will you be prepared?
John was ready. Even his initial protest indicates he was ready. How did John prepare to partner with Jesus? How can you prepare to partner with Jesus for a specific assignment?
John knew his life purpose. He knew his role was to prepare the way of the Lord. God has a purpose for you too. Do you know it? Your purpose is unique and specific. It lines up your gifts, your passions, your abilities, your personality, and your experiences. If you struggle to identify your call, check out my SHAPE Virtual Book Club to get you started. Do you have a call?
John’s message was clear. In order to fulfill his call to prepare the way of the Lord, he had a clear message to deliver. “Repent!” Is your message clear? What message do you send in your words, your actions? Does your inner world match what others see? Is your message clear?
John firmly believed in his call. This conviction drove him to a bizarre lifestyle. Is your conviction strong enough that you will make the necessary choices to fulfill your call? Conviction will drive you to set aside lesser pleasures to pursue a lifestyle that many may not understand. Do you possess conviction?
John was brave. Challenging the religious and political leaders required courage. Courage is weighing the risks of following God and deciding that regardless of the consequences, it’s worth it. Are you courageous? Do you trust God enough that you are willing to boldly follow him regardless of the outcome? Do you have courage?
John had confidence, not in himself but God. He understood who he was and who Jesus was. And when the moment came to either accept or reject Jesus’ invitation to partner with him, he placed his confidence in Jesus and accepted the invitation even though it didn’t make sense. Is your confidence in yourself or in God? When Jesus invites you to partner with him, will you trust him that he knows best? Do you have confidence in God?