Monday, November 5
Today's reading: John 3:22-36
John had quite a ministry and following. Yet when Jesus comes into the scene, he immediately recognizes and proclaims Jesus as the all-powerful Son of God, and he willingly submits himself and his ministry to Jesus. John's followers don't understand John's support of and enthusiasm for Jesus's growing ministry, so John explains quite plainly that is he not the Christ, but that Jesus is, and that means that John's rightful place is being submitted to Jesus and to point people to Him as the Son of God and Savior of the world. One of the most powerful statements John makes to his disciples is this:
"'[Jesus] must increase, but I must decrease'" (vs. 30).
The same is true for us. If we truly want to live for Christ, our earthly desires must decrease so our first and foremost desire is to serve God and point people to Jesus. That sounds easy enough, but our flesh (that's our sin nature) is always there in the background urging us to elevate ourselves so we take God's place--telling us that we should be the boss of our life, that we should be calling the shots, that we deserve the best car, house, job, etc., that we are more important than others--you get the picture. So the example of John the Baptist was such a good reminder today of our need to elevate Christ and put Him first, and then in that surrendered position to boldly proclaim and represent Him to others.
What does Jesus increasing and you decreasing mean for you personally? How will you exalt (promote, elevate, proclaim) Jesus this week? Tami
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