“As it is written in the book of the words of Isaiah the prophet, ‘The voice of one crying in the wilderness: Prepare the way of the Lord, make his paths straight” (Luke 3:4).
The words of John the Baptist make me think of the shortest distance between two points, which is a straight line. However, John is speaking spiritually, not physically. Have you thought about the path you make for the Lord? Does it look straight? Does your life reflect the love of Christ? Do you inspire others to join you in your pilgrimage or do you give mixed messages by living a double life? I have to admit to you that my life has not always shown the compassion or mercy of God, but He has been faithful to rebuke me and set my feet on the straight path.
THINK ABOUT ITL
The word for “straight” in Hebrew is “yashar,” which expands the meaning to include “good, upright, pleasant and prosperous.” This causes me to think about my thoughts and behavior. “Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things” (Philippians 4:9). Be encouraged in your Christian walk. “We are his (God’s) workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them” (Ephesians 2:10).
PRAY ABOUT IT
Holy Lord, send your Spirit on us so we might think good thoughts and do good things so others will experience your love. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
Do you have doubts about who God is or how strong He is or if He does what He says? If you do, you are not alone. The Bible tells about people who had the same experience.
John the Baptist preached about repentance and salvation, but when he was in prison, he wondered why he suffered for preaching the truth. He asked his disciples to go to Jesus and ask if He was the expected Messiah. Jesus replied, “Go back and report to John what you have seen and heard: The blind receive sight, the lame walk, those who have leprosy are cured, the deaf hear, the dead are raised, and the good news is preached to the poor” (Luke 7:22). This verse is fulfillment of Isaiah 29:18, one John would have known.
Thomas, one of the disciples, doubted that Jesus was who He said He was. He would not believe in the resurrection unless he placed his finger into Jesus’ nail-scarred hands and feet. Jesus did not condemn him for doubting but let him touch his hands, feet and side. Then Thomas said, “My Lord and my God!” In response Jesus told him, “Because you have seen me, you have believed; blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed” (John 20:28-29).
THINK ABOUT IT
Scripture has many more stories of doubters–Moses, Gideon, Solomon; to mention only a few. What about you? Do you doubt Jesus is who He claims to be? Do you doubt God’s power to work in your life today? Do you doubt your worthiness to be loved by God? No one is worthy of God’s love, but He loves us anyway with a love that is incomprehensible. Know that it’s okay to have questions. The answers come in a relationship with our living God. You can know Him by admitting your need of Him and reading His word. He is faithful to speak to your heart at your greatest need, your need to know Him.
PRAY ABOUT IT
Thank you, Holy Father, for Jesus your only Son who paved the way for us to have a relationship with you by sacrificing His own life on the cross for the forgiveness of our sins. Help us to live in light of this amazing love. In Jesus’ name, Amen.