For a long time, the people were beholding John.
On this day, Jesus comes and John pointed their eyes to look at the Lamb of God. John was a willing front man converted to a background. For the rest of his years in the desert, the people were looking for him for answers, for wisdom. For about thirty years, his followers were waiting where he would go and where he won’t go. For those years, peoples’ faces were in front of his face. This day, those faces turned to Jesus’ face. He tells them, “Behold…” He directs them to the one who does not only give answers but who is the Answer. He points them to the one who does not only show the way but who is the Way.
We wonder if John prepared himself for this moment. He may have been resolute to do this for he knows he was called to prepare the way but not to be the Way. He may have wrestled with the thought that he will be an afterthought when this time would finally come. Yet, we know what he did. He said, “Look at Jesus, not at me.”
Will you point people to Jesus? Allow their faces to make a turn from yours and behold Jesus. Will you allow yourself to be “second”? Allow Jesus to take the higher podium in your life and in their lives. Know that your ability is limited and his is limitless. Know that your work is bounded and his is infinite. Learn to give the baton to Jesus and finish the race.
Whoever you are in preparing his way, may you do this. You may not be John the Baptist and maybe you are John the greeter. Or John the table setter. Or John the acolyte. Or John the music minister. Or John the food preparer. Or John the church cleaner. Or John the popular preacher. Or John the head pastor. Or John the assistant to the vice member of the parish council.
Let Jesus take the center stage. Be ready and be prepared, as you prepare for him, to say “Behold…”
May you say the same. May you do the same.