“He must increase, but I must decrease” (John 3:30, NASB).
In the world we see people in positions of power and influence struggle with the issue of knowing when to step back or step down. Often they fail to do so voluntarily and are forced to relinquish their power and control. This very scenario played out over the last few years on the international political scene in the Middle East as several rulers struggled to hold onto power despite widespread riots and protests. We see in this verse that John understood his role and purpose. In fact, John’s destiny as Jesus’ messenger had been told to his father before he was born. Even though he was well known and popular, John knew he was not “The Chosen One,” he was the front man – the warm-up act while Jesus was the “main attraction or headliner.”
Headliners often use a front man – Laurel had Hardy, Andy Griffith had Barney, Lucy had Ricky, and Johnny Carson had Ed McMahon. John the Baptist’s job was to get the crowd ready, to get them thinking, to encourage them to examine their lives, and to prepare them for The Gospel of Jesus Christ. Following His baptism, Jesus launched His ministry and it was now time for John to step down and move out of the limelight and into the shadows. As Christians, we must all pray and ask God to reveal His will and perfect purpose for our lives. Are you destined to be a front man or a headliner? Are you at a place in life where God is asking you to step back or step up? Knowing when it is “the right time” for either one requires you to be still so you can hear God’s voice clearly. I encourage you, once you hear Him, get moving!
Lord, thank you for showing me your will for my life. Father, continue to teach me to follow you at all times that I may never be out of step with you. Help me to get moving and step up or step down, decrease or increase, according to your perfect will. Through the blood of Jesus and in the name of Jesus I pray, Amen.