Day 8: Cutting in Line

Read: Start by reading John 1:15 out loud a few times. 

John testified concerning him. He cried out, saying, “This is the one I spoke about when I said, ‘He who comes after me has surpassed me because he was before me’ ” (John 1:15 NIV).

Meditate: In many Eastern cultures, age determines seniority. In Thailand, the more junior person (usually the younger one) will greet the more senior person (usually the older one) in order to show proper respect. When a hierarchy other than age is used, it is typically understood by the culture. 

In John 1:15, John wanted to be sure his followers gave their highest respect to Jesus. John knew that his followers needed some education about the honor that should be given to Jesus. As you meditate on John 1:15, think of why John felt compelled to explain that though Jesus was born a few months after John, Jesus had been present with God from the beginning, making Jesus superior.

Read John 1:15 again. - Sing a song of praise to God that expresses why He is worthy of praise. 

Do you ever find yourself, like me, annoyed when someone cuts in line? Do they think their time is more valuable than mine or that they are more important and have the right to move in front of the rest of us? How might it feel to live in a culture where no one stands in line? 

In a way, John insinuated that Jesus had every right to move to the front of the line. As Christians, we understand that God’s kingdom works differently than how things work on earth. In Matthew 20:16, after a story about workers getting paid the same amount of money for different amounts of work, it says, “So the last will be first, and the first will be last” (NIV). Perhaps this kingdom will require us to change our thinking about our personal rights.

Notice: Make today a bit different. Notice some ways where you can put other people first and do it. How did your attitude change about the person when you allowed him or her to be first? In what ways will you grow in Christ by treating others with preferential treatment?

Pray: While driving today, pray that you will put Jesus first in everything you do. Ask Him to point to places where you are selfish or where you are putting other things before Him.