A thorough preparation!

John grew up and became strong in spirit. And he lived in the wilderness until he began his public ministry to Israel. (Luke 1:80 NLT)

John right from his childhood lived up to His motto, “He (God) must increase and I (soul) must decrease!”.

The “I” he knew was his soul, which is his self will, emotion and intellect – these he made sure decrease; meaning these will not be strong enough to overcome his decisions and purpose for his life!

For this reason, he forced himself to live in wilderness where there is not much appetite for his flesh and until his soul (self will, emotions and intellect) submits to his calling.

As soon as he dominated his self, his spirit became strong by the power of God’s Spirit and His word – sharp enough to discern and pinpoint accurately the Lamb of God Jesus Christ, the Messiah to the whole world!

A great preparation was needed for that great calling and the great life of John the Baptist, it wasn’t automatic because God said so. Are we getting ready?

You will have great joy and gladness, and many will rejoice at his birth, for he will be great in the eyes of the Lord. He must never touch wine or other alcoholic drinks. He will be filled with the Holy Spirit, even before his birth. And he will turn many Israelites to the Lord their God. He will be a man with the spirit and power of Elijah. He will prepare the people for the coming of the Lord. He will turn the hearts of the fathers to their children, and he will cause those who are rebellious to accept the wisdom of the godly.” Luke 1:14-17

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Shocking Surprise

“How kind the Lord is!” she exclaimed. “He has taken away my disgrace of having no children.” (Luke 1:25 NLT)

Elizabeth and Zachariah probably managed their expectation as they grew old and wasn’t expecting God to give them a child anymore.

When God gave John the Baptist as their child – they were old and it wasn’t a sweet surprise but was a shocking surprise to learn that God indeed want them to have a child and intended to give at His time – the right time!

Unlike Abraham and Sarah they didn’t had a promise to wait for a child, but they resolved in their hearts to serve the Lord and allowed His will to prevail.

Yes, Elizabeth was too old to have a baby and Mary was too young to have a baby – but it was God’s perfect timing to send John the Baptist, the forerunner and Lord Jesus Christ, our Savior in just the right time when we were utterly helpless!

God is very kind to meet your needs and give your heart’s desire – you can’t hope more to receive it sooner or lose hope to escape the shocking surprise from your dear Lord!

The Lord will work out his plans for my life—for your faithful love, O Lord, endures forever. Psalm 138:8

Take delight in the Lord, and he will give you your heart’s desires. Psalm 37:4