The Nativity of John the Baptist

Isaiah 49:1-6; Psalm 138(139):1-3,13-15; Acts 13:22-26; Luke 1:57-66,​80

It is very easy to desire celebrity - the uninhibited adulation by others is attractive! But no matter how much of a celebrity we are, there is always someone who is better than us.

Arguably, the greatest celebrity of all humankind was John the Baptist. He was a prophet from before his birth - he left in the womb as a result of being near to The Lord, his God and ours. He certainly was a celebrity in his time - people travelled from all over the known world to see him. He was a striking figure, a wild man living a life of subsistence yet wise enough and knowledgeable enough to have been able to earn whatever he wanted.

Yet, he placed himself as the least of all men. He could easily have asked his followers to have a way with Jesus, who in human terms was an upstart prophet who threatened to steal John's celebrity from him. But he did not. Instead, he described himself as unfit to untie the sandals of our Lord - the most demeaning task given to the lowest order of slave, as the streets of the town were coated in filth from the animal traffic through them. And he tasked all his followers to follow Jesus.

And Jesus chose him to perform the most personal and significant service to our Lord of any other man - to baptise him.

And now, John is at the very heart of God in the Kingdom of heaven, an example for us all to follow. We must diminish ourselves, that others may find Jesus, not us.

Posted in Daily Reflection.