Prepare the Way of the Lord
Recently, while in prayer at our small group meeting the Holy Spirit began answering a question I have been asking about what He means when He says to “prepare”.
Over the past couple of weeks the Holy Spirit has been speaking to us individually and as a group to prepare. It seems like something significant is coming… something dark, tumultuous, and possibly even devastating to our way of life as we know it. I personally have felt heavily burdened and even gloomy about what is ahead, the suffering, and Christ’s Church being ill prepared.
It was in the context of my personal heaviness that the Spirit spoke to me in prayer during our meeting.
As it is written in the Prophets:“Behold, I send My messenger before Your face, Who will prepare Your way before You.” “The voice of one crying in the wilderness: ‘Prepare the way of the Lord; Make His paths straight.’ ”
John the Baptist was entrusted with the message to “prepare the way of the Lord. It was up to the people to make the path of Jesus straight. The bedrock of this path was repentance. Turning from sin (that which separated from God the Father) would be that which would blaze a passable path for Jesus. The ground of repentance welcomed the presence of Jesus, and still does. Jesus in turn lays claim to the ground and the harvest of all planted there who are given Him by Father.
In prayer I saw a picture of myself standing beside a front door of a large hotel – such as you might see in downtown New York. As I stood there I noticed Jesus followed by an entourage of people. Without a word, I could see that He was intent on entering the hotel. In a moment I was faced with an opportunity. I was standing by the door. I was not a doorman for the hotel. It was not my job to open the door for guests. Yet, here was the King of Kings coming and I was closest to the door, I realized who was before me and took initiative to be the one to open the door for Jesus. Without slowing His pace, and a loving nod of satisfaction, Jesus freely walked through the door.
In my vision the significance of the hotel was that it was filled with people. All of which were behind their own doors. Doors He intended to walk through to bring people out of their entrapment and into His way.
In a sense, John the Baptist “opened the door” for Jesus. John’s message to the people was to clear a path for Jesus. Turning away from sin and facing Father was opening doors inviting Jesus to enter unhindered. Preparing Jesus’ path was the responsibility of the people. The walkability and route of Jesus’ path was determined by the response of the people to His coming (example: And He did not do many works of power there, because of their unbelief. Matthew 13:58)
When Jesus walked through the hotel door he was followed by His entourage. Once they were through Jesus paused looking back at me and I knew that I was to join them.
Jesus statement to those who came into His path was “follow me. There is more significance to preparing the path of Jesus than just opening in the door. Consequently, we become part of something much bigger than ourselves. As part of Jesus’ body we are on a mission to open the doors for Jesus into the lives of others.
What the Holy Spirit revealed to me at that moment was that “prepare” had to do with preparing the way of Jesus in this present time. Jesus’ eyes are set to enter a place. If we are alert, we will recognize this continually. When we see Him yearning to enter will we open the door for Him to enter and make a straight path for His feet? Or do we procrastinate and make excuses expecting someone else will do it – someone more capable or qualified? Or, since Jesus is all powerful, we think He will open it Himself. Jesus came into the world with the mandate for mankind to prepare the way. The fields are white to harvest and even more so as the days grow dark and evil. The Spirit is calling for voices in the wilderness to prepare the way of the Lord and make straight paths for His feet and His entourage of followers will reap the harvest.
In Revelation Jesus said to the church of the Laodiceans that He stands at the door and knocks. If anyone would open the door He will come in and eat in fellowship with them. Jesus asks us to open the door. It is our responsibility to prepare His way. There are doors to open that are our own… Paths in our own lives that Jesus would make straight where His presence and glory can be made manifest in and through us. Like a hotel room that Jesus wants to enter and fill with His glory, setting us free and giving us intimacy with Him as we follow in His path. The Holy Spirit is making His way from the inside of who He has declared us to be to the outside soul and flesh that He has is eye set on conforming to the image of His Son. There are doors of flesh we must open to prepare the way of the Lord.
And do this, knowing the time, that now it is high time to awake out of sleep; for now our salvation is nearer than when we first believed. The night is far spent, the day is at hand. Therefore let us cast off the works of darkness, and let us put on the armor of light. Let us walk properly, as in the day, not in revelry and drunkenness, not in lewdness and lust, not in strife and envy. But put on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make no provision for the flesh, to fulfill its lusts.
There are also doors into the harvest field. Jesus should never have to touch a door handle. His followers (us) are the ones to open the door and make straight paths for the presence of Jesus into the fields ripe to harvest.
Prepare the way of the Lord!