Ok, you can relate to this, all you Amazon shoppers–oh, wait, that’s everyone, isn’t it?
Picture this: You order something on Amazon, you’re super stoked to get it, you check the driveway every five seconds for the truck, it seems like it’s taking FOREVER (even though it’s coming next day via Prime), and then the blessed moment finally happens when that thing is safely placed into your hands–or unceremoniously tossed onto your front steps.
But then you open it… and whatever the thing is, it is NOT as advertised, not at all what you were expecting. All that excitement, all the pacing, all the waiting–not to mention the money spent–and all for nothing but a deflating moment of disappointment.
Would you believe me if I told you there were a lot of people who felt the same way about Jesus? His arrival had been foretold for centuries by multiple prophets, and by the time He finally made His debut, there were numerous opinions formed about just what this Messiah and Savior would be like. For most of them, Jesus was not at all what they were expecting:
- Religious leaders: These people expected Jesus to be wealthy, noble and powerful, and He was none of those things. They couldn’t receive Him because He was poor, humble, and chose to be the servant of all. He was the bastard stepson of a poor carpenter, hardly “fit” to lead the nation of Israel to freedom. (John 5:17-19)
- His own family: His mother and brothers thought He was crazy for asserting He was the promised Messiah. To them He was just an ordinary person. Perhaps they held it against Him that in His human form, He had to poop occasionally, just like the rest of us. (Matthew 12:46-50)
- His disciples: Even though Jesus’ disciples walked with Jesus every day as He healed people, raised people from the dead, preached sermons that confounded the wisest teachers, and performed powerful miracles, they still had a hard time truly understanding that they were in the presence of the promised Messiah. (Matthew 8:24-27)
- The people in His hometown: Much like Jesus’ family members, the people who had seen Him grow up before their eyes couldn’t understand how this regular kid suddenly grew up and started a career in preaching, teaching, healing people, and doing all kinds of miracles. (Matthew 13:55)
Hmmm.. that doesn’t leave very many people, does it? If you’ve ever felt misunderstood, you’re in good company, apparently! Truth be told, the only people who really believed Jesus were the broken, the hurting, the outcasts, and the sinful.
Here’s the bottom line: Jesus came in a form that very few people were expecting, and the people of His day had to exercise faith to believe He was the One He claimed to be. Not much has changed, really. Today it still takes a step of faith to believe Jesus is the person He claims to be.
Will you take Him at His word today?
Happy December 21st!
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