In those days John the Baptist came, preaching in the Desert of Judea and saying,
"Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is near." This is he who was spoken of
through the prophet Isaiah: "A voice of one calling in the desert, `Prepare the way
for the Lord, make straight paths for him.'" (Mt.3:1-3).
It is often a desert, and most certainly desolate. It is
the place wherein we stand as one--alone. We dare not rely on the support of others and we
are careful not to place false expectations in others. For it is a place where we must go
alone, be strong and follow through with what we must accomplish.
The voice of one is often one that is not readily accepted. As you become determined to
stand up and be counted, to speak boldly when your words will not be accepted, you will be
despised. God's Word in you will cut to the heart--it will move the hearts of some toward
repentance; while others will be moved to silence you and everything you stand for--and
some of those will be people you would never suspect. Some would be close, maybe within
your own church.
Nevertheless, you stand. You receive looks that could kill, looks of bewilderment and
looks as though you have simply lost your mind. You are talked to politely, and politely
dismissed--and talked about when you are no where around. You are the voice of one crying
in a wilderness.
The question has been asked, "If a tree falls in the forest, and nobody is there to
hear it, does it make a sound?" John the Baptist made a sound that many heard. He was
the voice of one crying in the wilderness. He was proof that the strongest sounds are
those that come out from the wilderness.
Many of God's leaders came out from the desert. And while many would see the desert as a
solitary, empty and lifeless place, it is a place wherein God brings unity from aloneness,
fulfillment from emptiness, and life from lifelessness. For as we empty ourselves of
ourselves and make ourselves desolate before the Lord, it is then that He can move in such
a way that though it would seem there is none around to hear the sound of what He does, it
reaches into the farthest corners of the world.
God still needs the voice of one. One who is willing to forsake the pleasures of this
life, to become empty of self and self-gain, to become desolate so that in so doing they
can be filled with the might and power of God.
A long time ago, a tree stood silently on a hill. There was nothing that would make it
stand out among the other trees. In fact, if it fell it might not have ever been heard.
Yet it was taken and fashioned to form a cross, and though it is no longer anywhere to be
found, its sound still carries in the air and throughout the world today.
Shall we be the voice of one?
Shall we be willing to cry in the wilderness?
Shall we do our part to prepare others for the coming of our Lord?
There is a world of people who are waiting to hear the voice of one echoed in our lives
today--the voice of one, crying in the wilderness.