As the people were in expectation, and all were questioning in their hearts concerning John, whether he might be the Christ, John answered them all, saying, “I baptize you with water, but he who is mightier than I is coming, the strap of whose sandals I am not worthy to untie. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire. His winnowing fork is in his hand, to clear his threshing floor and to gather the wheat into his barn, but the chaff he will burn with unquenchable fire.”
So with many other exhortations he preached good news to the people. But Herod the tetrarch, who had been reproved by him for Herodias, his brother's wife, and for all the evil things that Herod had done, added this to them all, that he locked up John in prison.
Now when all the people were baptized, and when Jesus also had been baptized and was praying, the heavens were opened, and the Holy Spirit descended on him in bodily form, like a dove; and a voice came from heaven, “You are my beloved Son; with you I am well pleased.” Luke 3:15-22
With two days away from flying to Sitka, I am filled with expectation. There is worry about getting everything packed away and making sure my mother is provided for properly. And there is the excitement and expectation about joining with the people of St. Peter's and having new experiences and adventures. As one chapter closes and another begins, there is much expectation and much we will not even imagine or know until we get there.
The people we full of expectation with John's preaching and the arrival of Jesus in public ministry. So many had suffered so much and they were waiting for the world to change through the strength of God's hand. After Jesus was baptized a voice proclaimed him the beloved son of God and declared God's pleasure. I am sure those who were present for this moment were transformed and hoping for an immediate change. And yet, God invited them and invites us today, to hear the heavenly voice name us all as beloved children of God, and to trust God with our needs and wants. Our expectations and hopes can be pinned on God, who offered Jesus so that we might all be children of God.
Today, as the tasks and expectations overwhelm, I ask that I will trust God in everything. May God bless our labor this day, and bring peace and calm to our worries. May we know we are loved and cared for in God's loving arms, who looks upon each of us as beloved children and whose work is always to transform and heal our world.