Daily Worship

Looking out

Linda Pollock January 28, 2024 1 2
Image credit: Unsplash
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Matthew 3: 13-17 (NRSVA)

13 Then Jesus came from Galilee to John at the Jordan, to be baptized by him. 14 John would have prevented him, saying, ‘I need to be baptized by you, and do you come to me?’ 15 But Jesus answered him, ‘Let it be so now; for it is proper for us in this way to fulfil all righteousness.’ Then he consented. 16 And when Jesus had been baptized, just as he came up from the water, suddenly the heavens were opened to him and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and alighting on him. 17 And a voice from heaven said, ‘This is my Son, the Beloved, with whom I am well pleased.’

How far did Jesus walk to reach John? I don’t necessarily mean the number of footsteps He took… Their situation makes no sense — John acknowledges that and accepts it. The One Who gave life to the Baptiser is standing in front of him, flesh and blood, with a name and a personality. John is looking out at something that ought not to be — and yet…

Jesus acknowledges the upside-downness of His request, He is the subordinate One here and accepts it, realising that, for now, all righteousness must be fulfilled.

You see, Jesus is looking out at His call which will continue to reflect a God Who cannot be kept in a box of tradition and ‘it’s aye been’.                                                                                             

In Scripture images are offered of the Holy Spirit descending like a dove, the Holy Spirit appearing as tongues of fire and the sound of the Holy Spirit like a violent wind. All images that are not easily confined or controlled.

Today, we are looking out at One Who confounds our traditions and our expectations, our ‘aye beens’ — or are we? Have we the wit to look out at this One Who invites us to live precariously, defying social and spiritual norms as Jesus and John did at the Jordan river that day? Or are we just going to amble along, doing the same things, and expecting something different to happen?

Wake up! Change how and what you are looking at — look OUT, see what God has done and will do in, for, and through you.




Holy God, thank You for calling me to look out and discern, by Your grace, Your calling on my life and Your calling for the wider Church. Give me the good sense to look out, beyond my comfort zones and the strength to follow where You lead. In the Name of Christ Jesus, Amen.