In the first chapter of Luke, John’s and Jesus’ births are closely tied together. John is just as much a surprise to his aged, childless parents as Jesus was to the young Mary and her betrothed, Joseph. From the very beginning of their lives, John and Jesus are intended to be an important part of God’s redemption of the world. On into adulthood, we continue to see them moving in tandem. John goes ahead of Jesus, proclaiming a different type of baptism – not just one of ritual, bodily purification. Instead, John speaks of repentance and spiritual purification. Whether he knew it in the early days or not, John was preparing people to be more open to Jesus’ message.
Who have been the messengers who have helped smooth your path? Who has shown you forgiveness and acceptance when you least deserved it? To whom have you shown that same grace?
In prayer, lift up those who have led and continue to lead you to Jesus.