John 3:27-28 “They came to John and said to him, “Rabbi, that man who was with you on the other side of the Jordan—the one you testified about—look, he is baptizing, and everyone is going to him.” To this John replied, “A person can receive only what is given them from heaven.”
The disciples of John come to their leader, raising a valid concern about their ministry- Jesus, the new preacher in town, was pulling more crowds that their leader John, and if anything was not done, even those in their Ministry would begin to follow him. Perhaps they came expecting John to panic, say something out of tune or demeaning of the new ministry in an attempt to justify the dwindling numbers in their following or even take drastic measures in an attempt to stem the tide in a competitive overdrive.
To their disappointment, he does not react in any of those ways- in fact, his answer doesn’t appear to instil the kind of confidence they may have been expecting. But John is a man who understands that his life is one of stewardship, and nothing he has really belongs to him, it has been given to him. Those followers were given to him by God in the first instance, and as a steward his duty was to manage on behalf of the real owner, not to hold on to.
When you think of your life, career, spiritual and natural gifts, wealth, children and all you hold on to and determine it’s your own, does it ever occur to you that’s not really true?




The deceptiveness of externals

1 Samuel 9:1-2 “There was a man from the tribe of Benjamin named Kish. He was the son of Abiel, grandson of Zeror, great-grandson of Becorath, great-great-grandson of Aphiah—a Benjaminite of stalwart character. He had a son, Saul, a most handsome young man. There was none finer—he literally stood head and shoulders above the crowd!” (MSG)
From the onset, King Saul had qualities that gave him a head start above any other contender for the highest position in the land. He had imposing height above anyone else and the charismatic charm that disarmed even the harshest of critics and the wealth to back the talk. He was no Johnny come late pretender, but had all that could physically influence constituents towards his favour- Yes, qualified in the eyes of man, but his scorecard before God was a dismal failure.
Looks can often be deceptive, and as this popular choice of the people reveals, the greatest tragedy in most kingdoms, nations and republics of this world is to be hoodwinked into electing representatives who look the part outwardly but are indeed very far from the part. Controlling the wealth outlets and media houses, they create a perception in the minds of the citizenry that their destinies lie with them, only to disappoint when they fail to deliver.
Samuel the Prophet succinctly put it- man looks at the outward appearance, but God looks at the heart (1 Samuel 16:7)