And so John the Baptist appeared in the wilderness, preaching a baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins…. (Mark 1:4).
Have you ever wanted to play a role that wasn’t yours to play? I have. Have you ever been jealous of someone else because their role in the kingdom seems far more significant than yours? Yeah, that’s been me too.
What I’ve noticed in my heart during those times is really just an unhealthy need to look good to other people. A drive and a desire to get more praise from people and have my name be known before others.
You see, God has a specific task for all of us to play. Some will be given roles like Peter, John the Baptist or Paul. Others of us will be a John Mark, a Barnabas or a Rahab. Our parts to play will be much smaller, but they will still have great significance in the kingdom because they are the parts God has destined for us to play.
One of my biggest hiccups in life has been submitting my will to the Father. I’ve spent far too much time asking Him to make me this or make me that, instead of resting, with contentment, in who He has made me.
Yes, the Lord loves to use His children and He delights when they use their gifts, not for the praise of man, but to simply serve out of their love for their Father. Truly, this is how our Father serves us. He doesn’t come for praise. Nor does He come for approval. Even Jesus Himself became lowly and despised for the sake of the Father’s will and for the saving of many lives.
Would I be willing to do the same? I hope so, but I know how I have been in the past. Therefore, I live keenly aware of my own pride as I lay it down so I can become small in the eyes of the world so that I might bring great joy to my Heavenly Father as I live fully alive in His love.
Lord, I don’t want to be jealous of others. I want to live to serve your name. I want to be fully alive in your love. Forgive me when I make life all about me. Forgive me when I grow jealous of others. Thank you, God, for using me in simple ways. Thank you for showering your grace upon me, in Jesus name, Amen.