Slow Down and Look
“And I have seen and have borne witness that this is the Son of God.”
Do you know Jesus? That sounds like a question someone who just knocked on your door might ask as they try to evangelize you. I don’t mean it like that. What I mean is, “Who is the Jesus you know? What’s He like? When I was a little boy I thought I knew Him. But the Jesus I knew then is different than the Jesus I know now. No, not that He has changed, but I have. I have learned to intentionally spend time with Him to get to know who Him better. As a little boy, I saw Jesus as someone far off, a God, definitely the one in whom I was to look for salvation. But he wasn’t the close, personal, friend he is now. I think that’s why I love the season of lent so much. During Lent, I take the time to get to know Jesus better.
You must spend time with someone to get to know them personally. Lent is a season for spending extra time with Jesus through fasting, prayer, and meditating on His Word. The busyness of life will keep us from getting to know Him if we aren’t intentional about it. Our lives are so busy. We fill them up with everything but Jesus, it seems. Then, if we have time, we spend a minute or two reading scripture and say a quick prayer. We don’t mean to leave Jesus out, but it just happens. Nobody wants to admit that we live as such – but we do.
So, as we begin this season of Lent let’s listen to the words of John the Baptist as he gave testimony of knowing Jesus. In the beginning of his words he said he didn’t really know him (Jn 1:30). But having been called, he obeyed and did the work God called him to do – baptize. It was in his obedience to do as God had called him that John came to know Jesus. He knew that if he was obedient to do as God had called him, that eventually Jesus would be revealed (Jn 1:31) In verse 34, John was able to give testimony of Jesus. Seeing him coming to the river, he knew it was Him, the long expected one.
Have you seen Him? Do you have a testimony of personally knowing Him. Oh, I know John the Baptist saw him in a physical way and being there at his baptism, seeing the dove descend upon him, and hearing the voice of God it was hard to miss; it was a miraculous event. While we can’t see him today physically, we still can see Him. We see him in our spirit, as He is revealed when we study and meditate upon His Word. We can see him in the church as we worship Him and feel his presence through the gift of the Holy Spirit. And most importantly we can see him in the faces of others in whom He shines through. But it only happens, if we’re looking for him.
This Lent, will you slow down and look for Jesus? He’s all around you. As the prophet Jeremiah said for the Lord, “When you search for me, you will find me; if you seek me with all your heart, 14 I will let you find me, says the Lord” (Jer. 29:13,14a)
My daily Lenten prayer – “Restore to me the joy of your salvation, and sustain in me a willing spirit. ” NRSV