1st Sunday of Epiphany
Scripture: St Matthew 3:13-17,Acts 10:34-43
Now I know that all of us did some preparations before we entered the sanctuary today. We picked out the right clothes, combed our hair, shaved if needed and readied ourselves for church.My leading question is this, what and how did you prepare your spirits to be in the presence of the Lord and His Holy Spirit?
Our scripture has a long list of individuals He prepared to bring alive his Holy Spirit in our lives. There is Elizabeth and her husband long past their child bearing years. The Lord said that a child will be born to then and “you will call him John”. We encounter Mary a teenager, betrothed to Joseph a carpenter in a non-sexual relationship during the year of their betroths. Yet Mary was pregnant by the holy power of God. When the child was born he was to be called Jesus and acknowledged as the son of God. There were shepherds in the field that night when angels appeared proclaiming the birth of the long awaited Messiah. They went to see the baby in the manger, left the scene and told everyone they saw that they saw the baby in the manger, the son of God.
John and Jesus are cousins, yet 30 years later they were to meet for the first time at the Jordan River. John had been baptizing people; the baptism of repentance, saying now is the time to seek the love of God. Until that time people worshipped God out of fear, not in the loving relationship that we have today. When John consented to baptize Jesus, as he came out of the waters the voice of the Lord proclaimed “This is my beloved son, in whom I am well pleased”. There were a chorus of angels, singing and praising God.
As we look and praise those who God has chosen as an instrument on his behalf, they are still individuals just like you and I. At the gathering of church each week, and daily as He prepares us for Christian service in the world today, our activities enable us to share His redeeming message in our lives with everyone we interact with. We prepare daily in our earthly lives for living in this world. We plan, schedule and arrange things daily. What would change in our world if we spent as much or even half that amount of time spreading the gospel of Jesus Christ. All it takes is for us to realize that we are a chosen vessel and equipped to be His spokesperson today.
We are millions of God’s hands in the healthcare business today, the doctors, nurses, aides. We are the staff at a local nursing home caring for those in need. Every work force has been called to do special labor in God’s work force. The Church today is the education department to share and spread to the masses God’s love for each and every one of us. Let us pause and look at God’s work force in our church family. From the least of us to the greatest, God can and will use us to spread his love in the darkest places of the world. Let us wake up, shout for joy for the love the Lord has given each of us to be in his ministry.
Go forth as a laboring force of the Lord today, for the harvest is great. While we don’t think we can do certain things, we need to be mindful that with God’s presence in our lives we can accomplish much more than we realize.