“In those days came John the Baptist, preaching in the wilderness of Judaea, And saying, Repent ye: for the kingdom of heaven is at hand. For this is he that was spoken of by the prophet Esaias, saying, The voice of one crying in the wilderness, Prepare ye the way of the Lord, make his paths straight. And the same John had his raiment of camel’s hair, and a leathern girdle about his loins; and his meat was locusts and wild honey. Then went out to him Jerusalem, and all Judaea, and all the region round about Jordan, And were baptized of him in Jordan, confessing their sins.” Matthew 3:1-6
Don’t miss the message God might be sending you because you’re too quick to wave aside the messenger because of the messenger’s appearance, the messenger’s location, or how hard and uncomfortable the message being delivered might be to hear and obey.
Can you picture it? Clothing made of camel’s hair. A girdle made with animal hide around the hips. A delicious nutritious diet of locusts and honey. A man in the wilderness crying at the top of his lungs for people to repent of their sins in preparation for the coming of the Messiah, Savior of the world. A man who would subsequently baptize the people as they confessed their sins and emphatically declare to them that true repentance is manifested in genuinely changed lives and that those who do not genuinely repent and turn to God through Christ will end up in “unquenchable fire (Mt. 3:12).”
John the Baptist looked, dressed, ate, and sounded like probably the last person in the world anyone would listen to, and he appeared in probably the last location anyone expected to hear the most powerful message in the universe about how to be in fellowship with God now and forever in heaven rather than in hell and the lake of fire. His fiery preaching of a dire warning that people must repent and turn to God or face eternal torment was everything but comfortable, soft, sweet, gentle, and promising in the way of earthly ease and prosperity. There was nothing comfortable, easy, or ordinary about John’s appearance, location, or message. But those who opened their eyes, ears, and hearts, who were willing to give up the fleeting earthly pleasures of this life to hear and obey the message this most unusual messenger delivered from God, would be eternally changed.
God always and only speaks to us in line with the Bible. And the messengers He sends to us to help us find and follow Him forever may be the John the Baptists of this world – anything but ordinary and easy on the eyes and flesh. But dedicated to telling others of the Truth of His Word and ways.
Don’t ignore the messages God sends you by waving aside the messengers He sends to deliver them. Hear Him. Obey Him. Live for Him.