Have you ever taken a deeper look into the last days of John the Baptist? He was the cousin of Jesus, a baby miraculously conceived at birth by an older woman, a childhood friend of the son of Mary, a man who had grown up giving his life to the professing of the coming Messiah and now he sat in a prison cell while his cousin, the Son of God was out healing the sick and raising the dead. I don’t know about you but I really can’t blame John for sending two of his own top disciples to Jesus with a very strong and personal message. Basically, he asked these men to go to his cousin, the chosen One, and ask him point blank “Are You the expected One, or should we look for someone else?” (See Luke 7:19) Things were not going well. For John’s Jewish mind, if this was truly the Messianic Age, something was going terribly wrong.
John was preparing to die and His cousin was allowing it. That must have hurt. Bad.
I have to admit to you, I can understand John’s questioning at that moment. If the Messiah could raise the dead, why on earth would it be a good idea to let his own flesh and blood meet the edge of a sword? How would that make Jesus look all powerful? How does that make Him look “Messiah” potential.
As much as I am embarrassed to tell you, I get upset when things aren’t going my way. I look to the heaven’s and I say, “You created the world. You can fix this. So, why aren’t you doing something?” In all honestly, like a child, I don’t handle it very well when I don’t see God moving….when I KNOW that He can.
Here’s the point. It’s all about the big picture. Whether I see it or not. Whether I believe in it or not, God has a plan that He is carrying out. My doubts, my fears, my questionings do not make God any less God. He just is. John’s doubts at that time did not change the fact that Jesus was the true Messiah. He simply was. Even when God’s decision to pull back or remain silent frightens and angers me, it does not change who and what He is. You’ve heard the saying, “It is what it is.” Well, God is who He is. My feelings, my life, my mistakes, my fears — nothing can change that fact.
If you are in a position where you simply can not see the big picture right now, or in all honesty, you could care less about the big picture, please know that you are not the first person nor the last to be in this predicament. Yes, the big picture and the plan will go on inspite of us. With us or without us, but more than that, God is big enough to handle our frailty at this time. Remember, He knows that we are but dust. He didn’t reprimand John. As a matter of fact, after the two disciples left, Jesus complimented John to the surrounding crowd that had gathered.
Be encouraged, that if someone as wonderful and powerful as John the Baptist could doubt his own cousin at a time of personal crises, you and I are not above that. It isn’t the first time Jesus has seen this, and it won’t be the last.
You will survive this trial or testing. Whatever it is. And when you come out on the other side, you will be able to look back and see the big picture. And you will be amazed.
Be encouraged. (Review Luke Chapter 7).