In old Jewish traditions, a man would propose to a woman. He would then leave to go and "prepare a place" for her. He would build a house, or add a room onto the house he already had for he and his bride to live in. The girl would continue about her business for months or even years, waiting on her groom to finish their place. But she would always leave a light on in the room she was in, so that when her groom would come back to get her, he would know where to find her and know that she was ready. She wouldn't know if he'd come for her during the day or at night, so leaving a lamp lit was a necessity.
We have to be ready for Jesus' return. Being ready for Him to come in the middle of the night and find us still waiting patiently for Him. I want Him to come back and find me faithfully waiting. Letting my light shine all the time so that He'll know where to find me and know that I am ready for Him to take me away. I want Him to see my white garments and know that I am for Him only.
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John the Baptist was someone in the Bible who embraced his calling to the fullest extent. He existed to pave the way for Jesus. To prepare the way for Him. To prepare people for His coming. All He did was announce the coming Messiah. He proclaimed His goal and His power. Not only did He announce the coming of Jesus, but also the fact that Jesus was going to baptize people with the Holy Spirit and with fire. John the Baptist lived completely yielded to his calling. Everything about him pointed to Jesus. He waited actively, fervently, and passionately for Him.
John the Baptist announced Jesus' first coming. And he did that well. But we're here to announce Jesus' second coming. To help prepare ourselves and everyone else around us for the Bridegroom's return for us. We are the John the Baptists of today. We're meant to prepare the way for Jesus to come. We are brightly lit lovers of God, shining so that not only will everyone else see the light, but Jesus will know right where to find us when He returns.
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After Jesus was crucified, He came back and appeared to over 500 people, telling them not to leave Jerusalem until the Holy Spirit came upon them. However, only 120 were still there to receive the Spirit when it actually came time for the outpouring. This small group was fervently awaiting the Holy Spirit, spending time in prayer and worship until the Spirit came upon them. They had a unity of heart and really went after what Jesus had promised. And they were the ones who received the gift of the Spirit and the anointing and power to move and walk in the same power that Jesus had.
In the same way that a bride would wait years for her groom, and John the Baptist fervently waited and announced the coming Lord, people were called to passionately wait on the Spirit's arrival. It was those who were completely yielded to the coming Jesus that received the outpouring of the Spirit. People who were so wrapped up in everything about Jesus. Wrapped up in God's purposes for them. I want to be completely wrapped up in and engulfed by Jesus and His love and purposes. Fully empowered by the Spirit.
But we have to seek out the deeper things of God, passionately and fervently praying for them and awaiting their arrival...but those who seek find. People had to wait on the Spirit, but were blessed immensely for not losing focus and not forgetting that the Spirit was coming. That there was more to be had. It was only the 120 faithful that received the overflow of the Spirit and were able to fully walk in the power that Jesus had. I want to shine. To glow with the radiance of God's presence. To walk in power that comes from above. That changes atmospheres. That makes heaven invade earth. I want to proudly receive Jesus and His entering in to my life. I'm ready for His return. And He will find me patiently, actively, and zealously waiting for Him.