Clergy View: A needed change
Regardless of your poor decisions, whatever circumstances you find yourself in, or even the deep regret you may have, the change you need is found in Jesus.
Have you ever come to the point where something needed to change? You look in the mirror and you say, "It can’t go on like this." We’ve all been there. We take stock of our lives and we’re convinced that things can’t stay the same. This can manifest itself in relationships, the way we use time and money, and even the emotional and spiritual condition of our heart.
That’s actually what has happened as you read Matthew 3; the crowds of the region were all coming out to hear a hipster vegan preacher in the wilderness because they too had become convinced something had to change in their life — namely their relationship with God. Taylor Swift puts it this way, “It’s me, hi, I’m the problem; it’s me.”
Now of course, these Jews and Taylor herself are not solely the problem in every area of life. We’re bombarded by other flawed people, unexpected circumstances, and the very normal difficulties of navigating an imperfect and broken world. But this passage and song does speak to the very normal experience of seeing that often our greatest problem, especially as it relates to following God, lies inside of us and not outside of us. So God sent an eccentric guy named John into the wilderness calling people to make a decision, to take action on what many of them had already become convinced of — a needed change.
Biblically, that’s actually what the word repent means, to turn and make a change. A turning from self and a turning to Christ. As it relates to our "Dangerous Journey," we’re all on a similar journey of navigating what a life of faith looks like. Whatever your spiritual baggage, experience, hurt and poor choices have been, it’s often not long until we come to the same refrain. I need to do something; I can’t can’t go on like this.
Matthew argues in chapter 3, that the interesting man in the wilderness that day actually was fulfilling the promise of an old prophet named Isaiah. A prophet who spoke of the greatness of God, God’s restoration and joy He offers, and the promise of a servant and savior that would one day come. Fast forward hundreds of years and this preacher John is calling his listeners to make a change because the hope and forgiveness of Jesus is on the way.
If you find yourself in the same place these crowds were, can I encourage you to boldly and deliberately make the volitional decision to take a step toward God today?
Here’s the reminder you and I may need. Regardless of your poor decisions, whatever circumstances you find yourself in, or even the deep regret you may have, the change you need is found in Jesus. He gladly receives anyone who would feel their need for change and turn to Him. There is grace for you in Christ. If you need a friend on this voyage, reach out to me.