a lesson on “pointing”

It has been a while and there’s lots to share … after moving from Tucson to San Diego, starting a new job, finding new community, and settling in. But to share a snippet: Less than a week ago my roommates and I finished painting the living room of our apartment! And this lately rainy yet new place… is just starting to feel like home. (pictures to come)

I am now at UCSD working with students here with the Navigators. And the transitions have had it’s ups and downs but all in all I’ve concluded that where the Lord has wanted me is simply…  sitting at His feet and listening. As I was preparing for a bible study for some of the women, I stumbled upon a simple picture of discipleship … and I thought I’d share.                                                  We are going through the book of John this quarter and in…

John 1

The APOSTLE John begins by giving an introduction that describes Jesus as the SON of GOD. (and my further explanation of it wouldn’t do it justice) And the next portion after vs. 18 is what caught my attention.

The testimony of John the Baptist is what is explained next.  And what is mentioned about John is really enlightening, because he is a man who knows who he IS and who he IS NOT. And the following thoughts are on: what did John the Baptist know? and the things I didn’t really start to know until I pulled this passage apart.

I. WHO WE ARE & ARE NOT

In verse 20 -21 He confessed freely that “I am NOT the CHRIST.”…. [When asked] “Are you the Prophet” – He answered “NO.” (emphasis added) When he was asked then “who are you?” He replies in the words of Isaiah 40:3. “… I have come to “make straight the way for the Lord.” ~ I pictured like crowds that part like the sea when a king or celebrity makes an entrance is what he meant.  The tone of John’s life from the beginning to end was to “make room” or to “make a way for” Jesus.  What humility and confidence… it makes me think, who was John looking at as an example?

II. WHO JESUS IS:

In verse 29 when John the Baptist saw Jesus from a distance he said “LOOK, the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world!” John the Baptist POINTS out Jesus, and TESTIFIES to WHO JESUS IS: the SON of GOD (v. 34).

In verse 35 it says “the next day John was there again with two of His disciples. When he saw Jesus passing by, he said, “LOOK the Lamb of God.” Though this wasn’t in his own power, John’s testimony moved the two disciples to drop everything and follow Jesus. ~BUT it took FAITH on John’s part to POINT and Trust God with the Response of these disciples. Which by the way looked crazy — because any leader would want people to keep following him… but here, John was giving away his flock to someone else.  Some would think — Is John an idiot?

III. WHO WE WANT OTHERS TO BE:

I love this next interaction because then: Jesus turns around and asks “What do you want?” and the disciples reply “Rabbi, where are you staying?” ~ though I probably would not have responded in this way, I want to speculate that — the disciples’ response was basically “Jesus, we want to be where you are/ we want to dwell with you.” (i.e. become HIS disciple and no longer John’s) And Jesus’ response to them is an invitation “Come, and you will see.” What I found neat was: these disciples did not get a direct answer, but their response required FAITH and OBEDIENCE.  [side note: And we know that this simple response to Jesus allowed them to later change the face of the world with the Message they carried of Jesus’ death and resurrection. ]

After a day with Jesus,  The FIRST thing Andrew (one of the two disciples of John) did was find his brother Simon Peter and tell him “We have found the Messiah (that is the Christ). And he brought him to Jesus. ” (v.40-42) ~ the person of JESUS, after Andrew witnessed Him for himself, caused Andrew to turn around and do as John the Baptist had done. Testify about JESUS. I thought wow, this pointing-to-Jesus-thing is kind of contagious.  🙂

MY “TAKE AWAY”:

Some people point with their fingers, or with their whole hand, or with a simple nod, and still others even point with their lips. But I hope like John the Baptist that with my life: I am POINTING others to Jesus. And if I have done anything right in my life, it would be that in the end I had done this. Because even with my words not being heard, or confused or even thought very insightful, I know always that JESUS SPEAKS.  And as John the Baptist testified: He has been “the Answer” since the beginning of time.

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