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Waiting in line

Does anyone enjoy standing in line?  I suppose there are some times when it is more tolerable than others but that’s probably about as good as it gets.

A few Sundays ago I had a standing in line experience.  I wear hearing aids and the batteries have to be replaced each week so I do that on Sunday mornings.  I keep them in a drawer in my office at church and I had just popped them in when about half an hour later they begin to beep --- the noise they make right before the batteries go out.  Obviously, the batteries I had put in were defective.  Worse news, they were the last batteries I had.  It was maybe 45 minutes before Bible class started.  Not wanting to go through Bible class and church unable to hear anything, I had no choice but to make a quick run to the local Wal-Mart.

I go to Wal-Mart, get the batteries, and because it’s Wal-Mart, no matter when you go there’s going to be a line at the check-out.  There were three or four people ahead of me and they all had several items.   The person checking them out was going at the speed of . . . well, let’s just say they were doing it like they were getting paid by the hour.  It was painful waiting, but I made it back to church in time.
John is baptizing in the wilderness and Mark tells us that, the whole Judean countryside and all the people of Jerusalem went out to him,” (1:5).  I’m sure that’s hyperbole but the point isn’t to be missed --- there were a lot of people out there waiting to be baptized by John.

And one of them is Jesus.

That’s right, Jesus is standing among the crowd waiting to get baptized.  Everyone else is there because they are expressing their penitence and seeking forgiveness from their sins (1:4).  Not Jesus.  He is sinless and has no need to repent or sins to be forgiven of.  He’s there to be revealed to Israel (John 1:31).  And He will be when the Spirit comes down like a dove and the voice from heaven speaks its approval. 

But for now He waits.

He doesn’t roll in on a chariot limousine, demand that He be seen before everyone else, or anything like that.  There’s nothing in the text that suggests that He received any special kind of treatment.  He waited like everyone else because He regarded Himself as one of them. He was one of them. 

This is God living as man.  His humility and His humanity are on full display.  And they set the standard for how we should live. 
It helps me put my life in its proper perspective --- including waiting in line.
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