The Call Of Witness

"In those days came John the Baptist, preaching in the wilderness of Judea, 'Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.' …Now John wore a garment of camel's hair, and a leather girdle around his waist; and his food was locusts and wild honey. Then went out to him Jerusalem and all Judea and all the region about the Jordan, and they were baptized by him in the river Jordan, confessing their sins…'I baptize you with water for repentance, but he who is coming after me is mightier than I, whose sandals I am not worthy to carry; he will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and with fire.'" (1)

"John answered, 'No one can receive anything except what is given him from heaven… He who has the bride is the bridegroom; the friend of the bridegroom, who stands and hears him, rejoices greatly at the bridegroom's voice; therefore this joy of mine is now full. He must increase, but I must decrease." (2)

A Voice In The Wilderness

A voice cries: "In the wilderness,
Make straight the path and mend your ways.
The Lord draws near with forgiveness:
Jesus is here! Uplift your gaze!

I'm too low to untie His shoe;
But He will stoop to wash your feet:
With gentle hands, He'll console you,
And cleanse your wounds with grace replete.

He'll baptize you with His Spirit,
And flood your turbulence with peace.
His word takes root as you hear it:
'I must decrease so He'll increase!'"

Like John, we're called to bear witness:
"Behold the Lamb, our saving Lord!";
To empty self in wilderness --
As we decrease, He'll be restored.

(c) Paul Buis, 2000

(1) Matthew 3:1,2,4,5,11
(2) John 3: 27,29-30