Leaving the Comfort Zone

Now it happened, when all the people were baptized, Jesus also had been baptized, and was praying. The sky was opened, and the Holy Spirit descended in a bodily form as a dove on him; and a voice came out of the sky, saying “You are my beloved Son. In you I am well pleased.”

Jesus himself, when he began to teach, was about thirty years old, being the son (as was supposed) of Joseph,…         Luke 3:21-23 (WEB)

Why did Jesus get baptized? I would think, primarily, to tell us to do it! I was baptized as an infant. For me, as a parent, this was an important ceremony in which I said, “This child is yours, Lord.” When I was 40 and made my commitment to Jesus, I decided to be baptized just as Jesus was. The ceremony did not make me His disciple but it was an outward sign of the change in my heart. Even now, 15 years later – I can remember how clean I felt coming up out of that water! I felt like a child basking in her Father’s unconditional love and approval.

Jesus was 30 years old, the son of Joseph, the carpenter. We are told nothing of His life after age 12 until this day when He began the ministry that He had come to do. What did Jesus do for those 18 years? We are told He was obedient to His parents and grew physically and in wisdom. For 18 years, Jesus, God-in-the-flesh, life totally human. He went to school, did chores, worked with Joseph as a carpenter, and grew. He learned what it was to be a man and prepare to move on into His calling.

“Calling” and “ministry” sounds so holy and “church-y”. Jesus had a passion in His heart – just like me. God has given me a call and He has given me gifts to equip me. As I have grown up and learned and watched for the opportunities that God places in my path, I leave the comfort of my home (comfort zone) and set out on the path He has for me. Jesus left His family and the carpentry to do what He had been called to do. When He was facing a crowd that wanted to stone Him, He did not turn back. When He faced Jerusalem, He did not turn back. Jesus and the Twelve and all His disciples since that time have taken the passion, the call given to them, and did not turn back.

Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Could oppression, or anguish, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword? Even as it is written, “For your sake we are killed all day long. We were accounted as sheep for the slaughter.” No, in all these things, we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor things present, nor things to come, nor powers, nor height, nor depth, nor any other created thing, will be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.

Romans 8:35-39 (WEB)

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