He had been the trailblazer. Living in the desert, off the land, locust and honey was his usual meals. He accepted the call Isaiah had spoken about years before: “A voice of one calling in the desert, “Prepare the way for the Lord, make straight paths for him.” John’s job was to “preach of repentance for the forgiveness of sins and to baptize new believers.”
So convinced was he that the Christ was coming that when people questioned whether he was the actual Christ, he humbly answered, “I am not worthy, but one is coming who will baptize with the Holy Spirit and fire.” John knew his place and knew that Christ was coming. How confirming it must have been for Jesus to show up just then, walk into the water and ask to John to baptize him.
Yet, a few chapters later in the Gospels, John finds himself in prison. I’m sure he’s wondering what is happening. Perhaps he is wondering why he hasn’t been rescued by Jesus. He ask a simple question. “Are you the one who was to come, or should we expect someone else?”
Broken, in despair and wondering what is to become of him, John questions. Are you the Christ, Jesus? Cousin? Are you the one?
I’m not sure about you, but I’ve wondered too, is this for real, is Jesus real? And yet, just like Angie, I have witness God’s amazing grace in my life so clearly there is no denying it. But I have had my moments of doubt.
Angie tells the story of Peter stepping out in faith to walk on water. In the height of that event, he begins to question, “Is this real?” Panic ensues, Peter calls out to his Lord as he begins to sink and Jesus reaches to rescue.
John, Peter and a host of others had their moments of doubts, but even though these people doubted, they knew, deep down, Jesus was the Christ.
“Other people believing and telling their story is powerful, but it isn’t a substitute for experiencing it yourself.” Angie Smith
Each of our faith walk is evident that Christ is real. Angie points out, not to be passive in our relationship with Jesus. We live out our faith when we step out and believe, even though we can’t see.
Basically, she is telling us to MOVE. This is huge for me because my fear, my big huge, audacious fear keeps me from moving. I will question a thousand times, is this from you God? Perhaps I should wait a little to see how this pans out. I would like to say I’m the type of person who would leap out of the boat and run to Jesus on water. Truth be told, I’d stick so close to that boat, waiting for one more confirmation it was him. Perhaps missing a God moment all together.
Here’s what happens when we don’t move. We miss out. We miss opportunities. We miss seeing God. If we move, step out in faith, well that is what Angie points out as,
“This my friends is walking in a faith that transforms.”
If our fear keeps us from experiencing God, we miss his amazing blessings. Friends, there is no fear here. God’s promises are true, we need only to go to the scriptures to see them. The more we read, the more we understand God’s amazing plan for each of us. Will it include success? An easy life? Perhaps. But there is a greater chance it will not. In fact, scripture says we will have troubles. But isn’t it then, when we don’t succeed, when life isn’t easy that we reach out to God and he holds us? Rescues us? Our faith is strengthened in those moments. That is transformational faith.
Jesus sends people back to John to tell him; “the blind receive sight, the lame walk, those who have leprosy are cured, the deaf hear, the dead are raised, and the good news is preached to the poor. Blessed is the man who does not fall away on account of me.”
Jesus is telling John, oh yes, John, I am he. God’s plan is real. No need to fear……
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