The traditional scripture for the third Sunday of Advent is John 1:19-28. In this story John the Baptist is approached by the Jewish leaders and asked to identify himself. John quickly tells them he is not the Christ, but a herald for the Christ. One is coming “whose sandals I (John) am not worthy to untie.” He tells them.
Two questions today. The first is, Are we heralds for Jesus? Do we tell people not only that he is coming back and is indeed already here, That He is a part of who we are. In fact that he made us who we are? This is one of the jobs of Christmas, to tell people that Jesus came and is coming back. We tell people that we know that he came and we warn them that he is coming back and each I of us must be ready for that return.
Not all of us have the gift of speech, but we each have the gift of living our lives in a way that will draw others to Jesus. St Francis said, and I paraphrase, “Preach always, use words as little as possible.” Words are cheap. People throw words around all the time and half the time people don’t mean what they say. Or if we mean it, we find ourselves forgetting what we have said. When was the last time that you told someone you would pray for them and then didn’t actually do so? This happens to all of us. Live with purpose and live with Christ in your hearts. Go out and do things that will tell people that you are a herald for the great king who is coming.
The other question is how well do we think of ourselves. John said that he was unworthy to untie Jesus’ sandal. How do we feel about ourselves in relationship to Jesus. Jesus loves us and wants us to come to him freely, but he is also God and deserves our reverence and respect. This may look different for different people. It’s the attitude of the heart that counts not the show on the outside. Do you love God and respect him for who he is? If this is your heart attitude you are in a good place.