You might know we are in the beginning days of Lent—the 40 days prior to Easter. Some people give up certain things, in order to experience “lack,” to identify with Jesus, to know His desire to fill up those empty places. Others take on a new discipline. I decided to read the red letters—the words of Jesus (I personally favor Eugene Peterson’s Message translation)…to really listen and find new truths and direction for my life. I wanted to encourage you with something that surprised me. In Matthew 11, John the Baptist is in prison for a really stupid reason…and he has no clue that he’s about to…ahem, get his head chopped off. He’s feeling confused about who Jesus is…and what he’s actually going to do while here. He’s certainly not doing what everyone had expected him to do.
In verse 3, John sent his disciples to ask Jesus, “Are you the One we’ve been expecting, or are we still waiting?” Jesus, of course, had a great answer, which you can read for yourself. But I’m blown away that John…after all he’d be through with Jesus…heck, they were even related! (Their mothers were cousins!)…would question for even a second if Jesus was the Messiah! This is the same John who made a name for himself by baptizing people, and telling them of the One greater, Jesus, who is coming!
This encourages me. Because there are so many days when I’m not sure how, or if, Jesus is going to show up. I don’t know what’s ahead, or, like John, if I even have one more day to live. But Jesus spoke highly of John—calling him the greatest man on earth, even with his doubt! God is working in ways we can’t always see. And he’s writing an amazing story with our lives…even though most days we’d like to be writing it ourselves! My daily quest is to remove all expectations of how I think my story should be written. To remove the pen from my hand, and let God do the writing…taking each moment as His gift of love.
Are you wondering how..or if…God is going to show up? You’re in good company. And the answer is a resounding YES! But it’s most likely in ways that you and I could never have imagined.
What do you do when you can’t help but wonder if God is going to show up?
I’d love to hear from you in the comments below.
Thanks for reading and don’t forget: You are not alone, and God will carry you!