What Did You Go Out To See?

15 Dec

When the messengers of John the Baptist had left,
Jesus began to speak to the crowds about John.
“What did you go out to the desert to see — a reed swayed by the wind?
Then what did you go out to see?
Someone dressed in fine garments?
Those who dress luxuriously and live sumptuously
are found in royal palaces.
Then what did you go out to see?
A prophet? Yes, I tell you, and more than a prophet.”  (Lk 7:24-26)

I think it is very true that we only see what we want to see.  It is true of us in our world today and I think it was just as true in the time of the Lord.  Jesus knew that.  His challenging words to the people pretty much prove that:  “What did you go out to see?”  Because, after all, if they were not prepared to “see” John the Baptist, they would miss what he was all about.

And miss him, many did.

They were expecting to see a herald.  In the eyes of many people, a herald would be dressed in the finest clothes and circulating among the finest people.  John the Baptist was not that kind of person.  He wore camel skins.  He ate wild honey and locusts.  He lived in squalor.

The people who came to him were not much better.  They were very much “down to earth” kinds of people.  They were far from the elite.  Yet, they heard John’s very sincere words and they did what he asked of them:  they repented and were baptized in the Jordan.

Those who went to see a wondrous spectacle came away quite distressed.  They did not heed John’s words.  Instead, they were ready to condemn him.  Yet, Jesus would go on to say that no one born was greater than John the Baptist.

What do you want to see in Jesus?  When we approach Him, we often do not hear Him speak.  It is not that He is not speaking to us.  It is just that our ears are closed, our eyes are closed, our hearts are closed all because He is not saying what we want to hear.

Do we really think we are worthy enough to dictate the words to Jesus that we want to hear?  Would it not be better to be humble enough to hear the words that Jesus wishes to speak to us?

FAITH ACTION:  Create a good chunk of time today to reflect in silence.  Ask the Lord to reveal Himself to you and listen for His response.