I may be doing what I don’t want to be doing, yet I can trust in God. His purpose is at work.
Why am I doing this?
Changing diapers, making suppers, filing through carpool.
Stuffing letters, answering email, packing boxes.
At different times in my life, a battle has waged within me.
In my mind, the clashing goes something like this: “Why am I doing this? There are so many important things I could be, should be, doing now. But instead I am doing this, requiring none of my gifts or talents.”
Prideful, I know. I told you it’s a battle. My mind tells me there is something else I should be doing right now; a job or task fitting for the person I feel I am.
I’m sure Jesus never struggled with these thoughts; He couldn’t. He was and is perfect. Yet, as I read about His life in the gospels, I do see that many times He was in positions and situations that were “beneath” Him as the Son of God. I see the perfect One respond perfectly, seeing God’s purpose and work in what may have appeared wrong at the time to those who knew who He was.
I see this right at the very beginning of His ministry.
The backwardness of Jesus’ earthly ministry
John the Baptist was on mission by God: calling the Jews to repentance. Setting up his platform in the Desert of Judea, he called out, “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is near.” (Matthew 3:2) Confessing their sins, the Jews came and were baptized by John there at the Jordan River.
Things were as they should be.
“Then Jesus came from Galilee to the Jordan to be baptized by John.” (vs. 13)
Wait a minute! Jesus, the Perfect and Holy Son of God, came to be baptized by John, a mere human? Isn’t that backward?
Yes it is and John knows that is this is true. “But John tried to deter him, saying, “I need to be baptized by you, and do you come to me?” (v. 14) John tells Jesus, “This is all wrong! You need to be baptizing me! You are the greater one; I am the lesser.”
“Jesus replied, “Let it be so now; it is proper for us to do this to fulfill all righteousness.”Then John consented.” (vs. 15)
Let it be so now …
Jesus didn’t tell John he was wrong. John wasn’t wrong. He was absolutely right. Jesus was asking John to fulfill what He asked him to do, to baptize Him, even though it seemed this action didn’t line up with Jesus’ purpose. “Let it be so now,” He told John.
Jesus knew His baptism by John the Baptist was exactly what He was supposed to be doing at that time.
Once the baptism was completed, God makes public knowledge just how right Jesus was: “As soon as Jesus was baptized, he went up out of the water. At that moment heaven was opened, and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and alighting on him. And a voice from heaven said, “This is my Son, whom I love; with him I am well pleased.” (v.16-17)
God was well pleased with Jesus’ obedience. Well pleased comes from the Greek word “eudokeo” meaning delighted. God was delighted with Him.
Finding contentment in what is
There are times, seasons in our lives, when what is feels like it shouldn’t be.
Maybe you are working in an office, doing tasks that in no way tap into your creativity. It feels like it shouldn’t be. Carpool, laundry piles and shower scrubbing doesn’t come close to helping you reach your fullest potential. As the newest of the team, it feels as if you don’t exist at times. Doesn’t God see? Doesn’t He remember who He created you to be? Why is God allowing these days to fly by without any one seeing all you have to offer?
God does see, just like He saw Jesus. He knew His son. He knew all of the God head was dwelling inside this man now on earth in human form. He also knew that at this time and in this place, His desire was for His son to walk in complete obedience with humility.
Here at the beginning of His earthly ministry, Jesus set a precedence for how His life was going to go: let it be so now. The whole time Jesus was on planet earth, His actions were marked by humble obedience to His father. His actions continually communicated that Jesus was on time walking in God’s time. Constantly listening and obeying. Even when His actions may have seemed out of sync to those around Him, Jesus was always in perfect rhythm with Father God.
I want to be like Jesus.
I want to be so in harmony with my Father God that I too can say, “Let it be so now…” Even if I may be doing what I don’t want to be doing, yet I can trust God has His purpose at work. Time and time again in my life, I have seen this come true. Just when I am not sure the why behind His actions, He reveals that He has been at work.
Most of all when we humbly obey, like Jesus, we can look forward to that day, when He will also say to us, “Well done, good and faithful servant!”