Today’s ReadingMark 6:1-29 (additional reading: Psalm 39:1-13 & Proverbs 10:10)

Have you ever ordered something from a magazine or off TV and you thought, “boy it would be great to have one of those.” The price was right, so you sent off for it and when you opened the package, you immediately felt, “Man, this is not what I expected to get.”

Imagine with me a John dressed in clothing made of camel hair with a leather belt around his waste. His food consisted of locusts and wild honey. People had pretty much forgotten his so called miraculous birth and his alleged mission from God. He was in his twenties now, and now when people saw him, they would say, “now there’s one life that did not turn out the way I expected.”

But then one day  in the fifteenth year of the reign of Tiberius Caesar when Pontius Pilate was governor of Judea, the Bible tells us that the word of the of God came to John in the desert. God must have said, “John I’ve heard your prayers time and time again, but the time was not ripe.” But now it’s time to do what I promised your parents you would do.’ It was about 25 years ago that God had made a promise to his parents. Part of the reason we do not get what we expected from God, is that we think in terms of praying today and getting it tomorrow. When God gives us a word, it may take years for it to come to pass. Our job is to get ready to make it happen.

John had been in the desert disciplining himself, waiting for the moment. When the word of God came to him, he came out of the desert preaching up a storm. People were coming from all over the place to hear him preach.  He told the religious leaders, they had to change the way they were living, because they were like snakes in the grass trying to get away from the fire. He told the crowds, the tax collectors, the soldiers, you better change what you’re doing. Quit your lying and your stealing. Start loving people in the way God intended.

People came from all round the area to hear John preach. They would fall on their needs in repentance before God. They were baptised by John and his disciples. The size of the crowds kept getting bigger and bigger. He baptised so many people, they started calling him John the Baptist. Nothing like this had happened in Israel for years.

I’m not sure what God has spoken over your life, I don’t know how long you have been waiting to see this word come true. I’m not sure if your life isn’t the way you expected it to be. But I know that God is always faithful to his promise. John didn’t look like a person we would expect God to use, but God used his life to touch so many and you know what? Your life is no different.

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