"The one who is coming after me is stronger than I am. I’m not worthy to carry his sandals. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and with fire."
Ministry of John the Baptist
3 In those days John the Baptist appeared in the desert of Judea announcing, 2 “ Change your hearts and lives! Here comes the kingdom of heaven! ” 3 He was the one of whom Isaiah the prophet spoke when he said:
4 John wore clothes made of camel’s hair, with a leather belt around his waist. He ate locusts and wild honey.
5 People from Jerusalem, throughout Judea, and all around the Jordan River came to him. 6 As they confessed their sins, he baptized them in the Jordan River. 7 Many Pharisees and Sadducees came to be baptized by John. He said to them, “ You children of snakes! Who warned you to escape from the angry judgment that is coming soon? 8 Produce fruit that shows you have changed your hearts and lives. 9 And don’t even think about saying to yourselves, Abraham is our father. I tell you that God is able to raise up Abraham’s children from these stones. 10 The ax is already at the root of the trees. Therefore, every tree that doesn’t produce good fruit will be chopped down and tossed into the fire. 11 I baptize with water those of you who have changed your hearts and lives. The one who is coming after me is stronger than I am. I’m not worthy to carry his sandals. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and with fire. 12 The shovel he uses to sift the wheat from the husks is in his hands. He will clean out his threshing area and bring the wheat into his barn. But he will burn the husks with a fire that can’t be put out. ”
Many people– Christians and seekers alike– yearn to know what their purpose is, but find themselves frustrated by a " holy guessing game" when they try to understand God’ s will for their lives. Holy Play frees readers to move forward together with God to joyfully and creatively imagine and live their true life purpose. It gives people permission to stop waiting for God to tell them what to do, and start doing what God has been inspiring them to do all along.
Kirk B. Jones (Randolph, MA) is a popular speaker, author, professor at Andover-Newton Theological School, a former member of the Commission on Justice and Liberation at the National Council of Churches, and founding executive editor of the journal African American Pulpit.For more information about this and other African American Resources, visit our website at http://www.africanamerican.cokesbury.com/