I try very hard to look for Jesus in the midst of my daily life. Yet, I often struggle with looking for Him in the wrong places, sometimes even with the best intent and a good heart. Too often, I make finding Jesus much too complicated. Can you relate?
Our culture is one that idolizes other people quickly and easily. Entire magazines, shows and blogs are dedicated to the lives of people considered worthy of our attention. We look to people and products for a little “high” of excitement, for fulfillment, and even for guidance. We quickly jump around from thing to thing, and the next big thing seems to always be calling our names just as soon as we get what we wanted a minute ago.
Even as Christians, it’s quite easy to fall into this cycle and look to other believers we admire, sermons or podcasts, or well-known Chrisitan authors to provide us the amount of Jesus we need in our day to day life. While these things can be helpful and inspire us to grow, they do not come close to simply experiencing Jesus Himself.
Maybe we need a little wake-up call. Thankfully, in Matthew 11, we see some other early believers needed one, too. For a long time, this group of people had been looking to one man for their teaching, for their spiritual growth, and for gaining wisdom. This one man was John the Baptist. Yet, even John himself knew that he was not to be the be all end all of their spiritual walks. John knew that his role was to simply prepare their hearts for the One who was coming. Despite warning his followers that he was not the one who could truly fulfill their hearts, the people still gravitated toward what was right in front of them. Even when the Messiah Himself began His ministry by speaking to crowds, the people who had grown used to following John had to realize something: What their hearts really were longing for had finally come. Fulfillment Himself was there, just waiting for them.
Perhaps this week you, like me, need to shift your focus directly to Jesus Himself. We are incredibly blessed to live in a culture where we can readily find Him in Christian books, on our favorite Pandora music stations, in online sermons, and we can always learn from the lives and examples of other believers. Yet, it can be easy to exhaust ourselves by trying to feel Him and find Him in these sorts of places and forget that He’s already revealed Himself to us.
Just as in Matthew 11, Jesus was waiting for John’s followers to realize who He was and simply turn to Him, maybe today, Jesus is waiting for you to stop trying to find Him in things and simply seek Him alone.
The fact that verses 29-30 are at the end of Matthew 11 is not a coincidence, and I love that. Finding Jesus does not have to be some complicated game or an exhausting process. Today, I encourage you to just look to Jesus and remember that He alone is what can fulfill your heart. He’s already there, waiting for you.