I’m an Indiana girl, transplanted to the beautiful Pacific Northwest at age forty-four. Though I love the mountains, ocean, and emerald-green forests of my new home, I miss the beauty of a freshly plowed field, crying out for seed. A successful harvest often depends on the preparation of the soil. Watch out now…that’ll preach!
God, the Great “Preparer”
I’ve spent the past week in John 1:1-9, and I’m convinced…God is the great Preparer. Consider that John’s account of Jesus’ ministry begins by describing Jesus as the Word (Capital W) and goes on to describe the role of the Word in Creation:
“And God said, ‘Let there be light,’ and there was light…And God said, ‘Let there be an expanse between the waters to separate water from water’…And God said, ‘Let the water under the sky be gathered to one place, and let dry ground appear.’” Genesis 1:3,6,9
How Could We Be Prepared For God In Flesh?
God, in His infinite wisdom, knew that fallen humanity could not comprehend–or even believe–the majesty of the Creator come down to dwell among men. John explains the dilemma of the finite face-to-face with infinity:
“In him was life, and that life was the light of men. The light shines in the darkness, but the darkness has not understood it.” John 1:4-5
So God Sent A Preparer
The Apostle John wrote in his gospel about the Elijah-like prophet, John the Baptist, who came to PREPARE the way for Jesus’s earthly ministry:
“There came a man who was sent from God; his name was John. He came as a witness to testify concerning that light, so that through him all men might believe. He himself was not the light; he came only as a witness to the light. The true light that gives light to every man was coming into the world.” John 1:6-9
Many looked to John the Baptist, thinking he was the Messiah. But no. He was a part of God’s preparation to reveal Himself to humanity. The LORD had scattered “preparers” throughout history–for thousands of years–to culminate in the revelation of His One and Only Son.
A Few of God’s Preparers For Messiah:
- Abraham (age 100) and Sarah (age 90) when their miracle baby Isaac was born
- Isaiah prophesies a Messiah born of a virgin.
- Zechariah and Elizabeth–conceive John (the Baptist) when they’re quite old
- a miracle similar to Abraham and Sarah makes it believable
- to prepare for the next level of faith…virgin birth
Two Types of Preparation:
- Clearly Stated Now; Watch For More To Come–this is John the Baptist. He said, “I’m not the Christ, but He’s on His way!”
- Progress Forward (Blindly); Eyes Open To Past Faithfulness–this is more like Queen Esther, who was told by her preparer, Mordecai, “Perhaps you came to royal position for such a time as this?”
Look For God’s Preparations in These Circumstances:
- Unexpected Blessing
- Unexpected Tragedy
- Life Changes/Transitions
- Relational Conflict
In each situation we face, God has prepared us somehow. A person, an experience, a book we’ve read, a song we’ve heard–something has touched our heart to give us grace for our moment of need.
Spend a few minutes right now to thank the Great Preparer for equipping you for the days ahead.
- What other great Scripture passages show God’s Grand Plan of preparation for Jesus’ birth and ministry?
- What ways has God been faithful to prepare you recently?