Sunday, September 18, 2011
Point Me in the Right Direction
John answered them all, "I baptize you with water. But one who is more powerful than I will come, the straps of whose sandals I am not worthy to untie. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire."
One of my favorite, must-see-repeatedly movies is "It's a Wonderful Life" starring Jimmy Stewart as George Bailey and Donna Reed as Mary Hatch (and eventually) Bailey. Outside the house where George's brother's engagement party is in full swing, George stands with his mother who is attempting, in the way only mothers can, to talk her son into visiting Mary who "lights up like a firefly" any time George is around. George hems and haws, but finally gives in and asks his mother to "point him in the right direction". She gladly does so with a gentle, yet persuasive, shove; George starts out, reverses course much to his mother's chagrin, but eventually ends up at Mary's front gate after all. Thus begins one of the most comic and touchingly memorable love scene in the history of cinema. Yes, George's mother certainly pointed him in the right direction!
In today's scripture, John, the voice crying in the wilderness, is offering the baptism of repentance to all who come to him with sincere hearts, and advising them how to comport themselves in honor of that repentance. The people are impressed; they begin to speculate about whether or not John is the long-awaited Messiah. John, unhesitatingly, sets them straight. His role has been to prepare the way, to make the crooked paths straight, for the coming of the One whose sandals he declares he is unfit to untie. He has duly readied and ripened the crowds to receive the Messiah with glad and thankful hearts; he points them in the right direction, the direction of Jesus.
Did you attend church today? Was the saving grace of Christ at the center of your worship service? Were you pointed in the right direction?
Psalms 93, 96 or 34
2 Kings 4:8:37
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Right now I am visiting family and couldn't attend church, though I have to admit, I have become less and less a frequencevisitor to church. I think it is so great that you have found an encouraging church family, that gives you room to grow and helps point you in the right direction. This morning, I read some scripture and meditated, allowing the Spirit to make clear some things which have been troubling me. When we don't have brothers and sisters to help support, instruct and point us in the right direction, I am blessed that we have a God of unbounding love that has planted His Spirit deep in the center of our hearts, always there, guiding, encouraging.ReplyDelete
Thanks for stopping by, Jessica! I know you have had a busy week and it means a lot to me that you would take time to leave a comment.ReplyDelete
Yes, we are blessed to have God's Holy Spirit to guide us and His love to sustain us, church or no church! I pray you will find the perfect one for you and your family one day.
I love It's a Wonderful Life as well. The movie resonates so deeply with me because it shows how important each of us is to each other. The connectedness of EVERYONE to everyone else. Amazing how far this paradigm goes back.
The fact that even when this movie was made there were people who believed this to be the case, even if NOT on a conscious level. To some degree this thought MUST have been flitting across someone's mind.
My church service didn't happen today, as I had to work. But I HAVE found a new home that I'm EXTREMELY excited about.
Thanks so much for your comment, Chris. Sorry you had to miss church today, but so glad you are happy in your new church home. That's a great place to be!ReplyDelete
I’m just grateful that someone years ago (someone like a John the Baptist) did point to the Christ (who is the Way -and I’ll go as far as to say the Only Way).ReplyDelete
The Only Way . . . :) I can't imagine life without Him.ReplyDelete