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Saturday, January 8, 2022

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1 John 5:14-21
Psalm 149:1-6, 9
John 3:22-30

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finding joy in decreasing

“It is the groom who has the bride. The groom’s best man waits there listening for him and is overjoyed to hear his voice. That is my joy, and it is complete.” —John 3:29

I was once a “best man,” at the wedding of a high school friend. I was overjoyed to see my friend marry his sweetheart. As a best man, your thoughts are wholly occupied with the groom. There is no disappointment for the best man when all the attention is being focused on the groom. It is a delight to see the groom’s joy in marrying his beloved bride. In fact, it would be out of place for the best man to attempt to “steal the show” and divert attention away from the bride and groom.

St. John the Baptist made an apt comparison in the best man’s relationship to Jesus, the Groom (Jn 3:29). We disciples of Christ are like the best man. We must decrease, so that Jesus can increase (Jn 3:30). This decreasing is not to be done in a self-debasing way. We die to ourselves not to fearfully escape from notice (see Mt 25:24-27), but rather so that Christ can live in us and shine through us (see Gal 2:19-20; Mt 5:15-16). It is our joy to decrease so that Jesus can increase in everything. As we decrease for Jesus’ sake, our joy increases and becomes “complete” (Jn 3:29). May we be the “best” men and women we can be. May the joy of the Lord be our strength (Neh 8:10), so that Jesus can ever increase through our joy-filled, Spirit-filled lives.

Prayer:  Father, when others look at me, may they see Jesus shining through me.

Promise:  “We are in the One Who is true, for we are in His Son Jesus Christ.” —1 Jn 5:20

Praise:  Norm and Sherry prepared for their wedding day by reading through the entire Bible together the year before their marriage. They finished the Bible the day before they married.

Reference:  (This teaching was submitted by a member of our editorial team.)

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