Monday, January 13, 2014

Joy of the Father

Matthew 3:13-17

It was a day like any other day,
When John stood at the River Jordon,
Baptizing those who would come.
He felt the gift of baptism,
The urgency to reach each person,
The rush of the water
Making each one clean and whole.

Amid the crowds came a man from Galilee:
From out of the crowds walked Jesus,
Lord of Lords, Emmanuel.
“Baptize me.”

Every bone in John’s body rejected the idea.
How could he be asked to do this?
Thoughts ran through is mind:
 “I am not worthy,
I am not ready,
I am not the one to do this.”
And he fought to speak,
“I’m the one who needs to be baptized,
Not you.”

Jesus insisted.
Sometimes when Jesus insists,
All we can do is obey,
So John did what he was told to do.

He baptized the Son of God.

Water ran over Jesus’ head,
Soaking his face,
Dripping in tiny droplets from his eyelashes,
Mixing with his tears.

John, who had been sent to prepare the way,
Saw God coming from heaven like a dove.
John, who had spoken to so many people
Urging them to repentance,
Now heard the voice of God,
 “This is my son,
Marked by my love.
With whom I am well pleased.”

John knew God spoke of Jesus,
But in his heart a flame lept,
He prayed God could say the same about him,
Even just a whisper,
That what he was doing was pleasing to God
That what he had done was God’s will.

John and Jesus looked at each other
John with eyes of uncertainty,
Jesus with a responding smile.
And they both laughed
In the wonderful pleasure of their Father.

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