Pastor Joynt's Devotionals

in REAL

Real, Day 19

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LUKE 7:31-32 “To what then will I compare the people of this generation, and what are they like? They are like children sitting in the marketplace and calling to one another, ‘We played the flute for you, and you did not dance; we wailed, and you did not weep.’

Some people are impossible to please! One of the best arguments for authenticity rather than conformity is that people are hard to satisfy no matter how much you strive to please them. Some folks won’t dance or mourn; they won’t be moved by warning or encouragement. Judgement does not scare them and joy does not attract them. Sometimes sophistication can blunt our responses. Sometimes time or stress can drain our emotions. Things that should move us to tears or generate celebration are treated as non-events. We become emotionally dead or numb. God appeals to us in many ways and through many emotions, but we have the responsibility to respond.

Can you dance?

Can you mourn?

Are you numb or responsive?

 

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in REAL

Real, Day 18

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LUKE 3:16-17, 7:28 | John answered all of them by saying, “I baptize you with water; but one who is more powerful than I is coming; I am not worthy to untie the thong of his sandals. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire. His winnowing fork is in his hand, to clear his threshing floor and to gather the wheat into his granary; but the chaff he will burn with unquenchable fire.” I tell you, among those born of women no one is greater than John; yet the least in the kingdom of God is greater than he.”

Jesus’ evaluation of John puts him equal to or ahead of every previous human figure, but behind those who become “citizens in God’s Kingdom.” What do we make of this? In John’s description of the Messiah, he acknowledges that the One who is coming is far superior in power and authority: “I am not fit to untie his sandals!” The Messiah will baptize with the Holy Spirit and initiate a new era. Those who belong to Christ’s Kingdom know a new and remarkable intimacy with their King. Those who he gathers and approves, have an ultimate security no other figure can guarantee. John’s greatness is real but bound up with an era that is penultimate and passing.

Have you ever known someone of great conviction and great humility?

John saw Jesus as the hinge of history, the decisive bringer of an ultimate Kingdom. Do you?

 

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