After nearly 400 years of silence and absence of prophetic revelation in Israel, John the Baptist would walk into the desolate place and fulfill the words of the prophet Isaiah (40:3). The people living in biblical times would know exactly what these words meant.
In the ancient Near East, there was a custom of sending a representative ahead to prepare the way for the visit of a king—to ensure that his journey was successful by filling in potholes and leveling bumpy roads, so that the king’s arrival would go as smooth as possible.
John the Baptist was God’s representative. His mission was to prepare Israel for the coming Messiah both morally and spiritually. The land of God’s chosen people was riddled with the potholes of oppression and the bumpy roads of internal strife. John’s presence in the wilderness was symbolic of the status of people’s hearts—dry and barren.
But they would not have to suffer much longer, for Jesus was about to come and make all things new again.
Mamas, as we make our way through this Lenten season, I know that there are some of you who would say that the path you are on is filled with potholes and bumpy roads. During these days before Jesus will turn graves into gardens, I want you to ask yourself what you are doing to prepare your heart for the risen Savior.
To prepare our hearts is like preparing the soil for planting. First, we must get rid of the brush and the thorns, clear the grass of what is no longer useful, and then, we must wet the soil. You would never just put your hoe to the ground and start planting on uncleared land. The seed can only grow in soil that is ready to accept it.
Sweet sisters, I encourage you this week to prepare the way for the King. Get rid of every thorn, eliminate those things in your life that are no longer useful, and then wet the soil. Clear out all the cares of this world, worries, doubts, anxieties.
Break up the ground as you read God’s Word.
Wet the soil with prayers and worship.
Prepare the way for the King of Kings!
Blessings as you prepare for Jesus will do this Lenten season,
Susie and the Help Club for Moms Team
For more information about Susie’s ministry, Between the Gardens, visit her website at susieoneal.org.