Have you heard a voice in the wilderness?
Have you ever been heading down a questionable path, and had a friend care enough to challenge you to rethink it, to turn back, to seek a better future?
Maybe you were in a relationship that was seductive, but really unhealthy. Maybe you were stuck in a job that was deadening, but you were afraid to change. Maybe you were violating your own deep values in some way, and somebody called you to account.
That person was your “John the Baptist” – the one who called you to turn, to repent, to redirect your life. Like John, her words might have sounded harsh. You might have wanted to turn away, not listen, continue as you were. But something gave you pause. There was truth in her words.
We all need a “John the Baptist” sometimes, to challenge our ways when we get complacent, when we seek expediency more than doing the right thing. But we also need something to turn toward…to draw us into a better, healthier, more honorable life. John didn’t do that part. Instead, he pointed toward the one who could: Jesus of Nazareth. While John could be off-putting, Jesus was magnetic: he drew people with his love of life, the wisdom of his teaching, his gift of hope.
We all have times when we are “in the wilderness” – not comfortable with the status quo, searching for something better, truer. Maybe you are in the wilderness right now. Listen for “John” who calls you to turn, to reevaluate your life. Then look for Jesus to draw you to himself, to love and forgive you into a new life. JBM