Monday, December 10
Graciously Speaking Truth
Today's reading: John 10:22-42
As we come to the middle of John 10, Jesus has yet another encounter with a group of Jews in the temple. These men don't want to accept Jesus because He isn't lining up with their expectations. He isn't saying and doing things like they want. He's professing, teaching and modeling a different way to live. Simply put, Jesus is "rocking" their comfortable world and they don't like it. So although they absolutely see the incredible supernatural things Jesus is doing in their presence, they choose to cling to their prejudices and doubts, and thus we see these men challenging and verbally attacking Jesus with the hope of getting Him to say something that would lead to His demise.
Jesus knows what's going on, and responds to their calculated inquiries in His typical manner--graciously speaking truth. Yet, many in the crowd were angered and wanted to stone Jesus and have Him arrested. But not everyone had that response. Jesus's actions and the truth He spoke reached and changed many hearts.
"And many came to him. And they said, 'John did no sign, but everything that John said about this man was true.' And many believed in him there" (vs. 41-42).
Once we receive Jesus as our Savior, we are His ambassadors--we are called to tell others about Jesus's free offer of salvation. But as we saw in this passage, not everyone we encounter will be open to or excited about our message. Some may be downright adversarial and even ugly to us. But as we graciously deliver God's message of life-giving truth, some will receive it and make a decision to follow Christ. So we must faithfully press on!
Why is keeping our composure and responding graciously so important as we engage in conversation with others about Jesus? Would you join me in asking God to help us view every person we encounter (even those behaving poorly) with His love this Christmas season? And then... let's ask God to help us be bold in delivering His message of love and hope to them. Tami
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