Your calling

Good Morning all. I pray today is finding you favored and highly blessed. Yesterday I was blessed at being able to get out outside and plant some flowers in the flower bed. And I was looking at these flowers and deciding how I was going to arrange them, it hit me. God plants himself in us and arranges us to make the beautiful mosaic of Christ followers. Each unique and different but beautiful and has a purpose. But we have to first hear his calling. So let's dig into the beginning of Chapter 3. In the fifteenth year of the reign of Tiberius Caesar-when Pontius Pilate was governor of Judea. Herod tetrarch(this word means ruler of 1/4 of a district) of Galilee, his brother Philip tetrarch of Iturea and Traconitis, and Lysanias tetrarch of Abilene- during the high-priesthood of and Annas and Caiaphas, the word of God came to John son of Zechariah in the wilderness. He went into all the country around the Jordan, preaching a baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins. (okay do we go around teaching and showing how God has forgiven us so that we may forgive others? John went around the country, we can't even do it in our homes.) As it is written in the book of the words of Isaiah the prophet: A voice of one calling in the wilderness, Prepare the way for the Lord, make straight paths for him. Every valley shall be filled in, every mountain and hill made low. The crooked roads shall become straight, the rough ways smooth. And all people will see God's salvation. (History shows that Isaiah was about 700 years before Christ. And John and Jesus was about the same age. So this message was prophesied 700 years before. So tell me how did Isaiah know? He lived for God and God gave him this message. And John's message is for preparing the people for Jesus. Are we listening to the calling of God and his message to us? ) John said to the crowds coming out to be baptized by him, "You brood of vipers! Who warned you to flee the coming wrath? Produce fruit in keeping with repentance. (He is saying let your life produce the kind of fruit that shows God. He is also warning them of Jesus coming.) And do not begin to say to yourselves, we have Abraham as our father. For I tell you that out of these stones God can raise up children for Abraham. (He is pretty clear about them not using who their forefathers or lineage. That is not going to save them. Kind of like how we use our traditions today, oh, we do this, we serve on that, it is not going to save you.) The ax is already at the root of the tress, and every tree that does not produce good fruit will be cut down and thrown into the fire.(Here is a strong message for us as well. If we do not follow God's commands and have the right fruit produced in our lives, he will cut us down and throw us to the fire. Does anyone that trims the dead off a tree keep the dead limbs? No, we put them on fire and destroy them. The same goes for us. Do practice what we teach?) What should we do then? the crowd asked. (Now he has their attention.) John answered "Anyone who has two shirts should share with the one who has none, and anyone who has food should do the same." (Guys, when our cups are full, we should share every overage we can. That goes for materials to spiritual.) Even tax collectors came to be baptized. (Tax collectors were the low of the low. It says even them.) "Teacher," they asked, "what should we do?" "Don't collect any more than you are required to," he said to them. (Do your job but don't take more than your job requires. He wasn't saying they could not be saved. He was saying be honest at your job. Do what is right.) Then some soldiers asked him, "And what should we do?" He replied, "Don't extort money and don't accuse people falsely- be content with your pay." Guys it is time to cut out what and who does not help you produce good fruit. Ask God what you need to cut out. Or better yet go to the Father and tell him cut out all that is not of you in me. Then you can produce the kind of lives God has in store for you. Then also no one can call you a hypocrite. Have a blessed day and see you soon.

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