Have you been mistaken for someone else? Have you seen someone that looks familiar, but you cannot place them? Have you been told a certain person was coming and you missed them? Have you thought about how common it is to miss someone important?
I’m sure we all have seen someone somewhere who looked familiar. We may think that we have seen them before and perhaps been introduced to them. We may have met someone, talked with them, and didn’t know who they really were or just how important they were.
Elijah was an important part of the plan for the coming Messiah. Prophecy had foretold his coming ahead of the Messiah. He was to prepare the way. His job was to begin the process of opening people’s hearts and minds, turning them back to God. Many people met him, yet they did not recognize him for who he was.
It began with his birth. He was given a priestly name, a name that was not common among the Jews. He went outside of town to commune with God, preach God’s message, and baptize people who repented for the forgiveness of their sins. Though many people saw him, heard him, and were baptized by him, they didn’t identify him as the one prophesied about.
As the apostles were questioning Jesus, He opened their eyes to who Elijah was. They had missed him as well. John the Baptist came as Elijah. He came to prepare the way for Jesus. He began to open people’s hearts and minds. Perhaps we need to open our hearts and minds to see how God is working in our world today.
I pray we all seek to see God at work today. I pray we open our hearts and minds to God’s plan. I pray each one of us will recognize God working in our lives and in the world around us. Open your heart. Open your mind. See God at work. See God using others. Be available for God to use you.
Matthew 17:11-13 Jesus replied, “To be sure, Elijah comes and will restore all things. But I tell you, Elijah has already come, and they did not recognize him, but have done to him everything they wished. In the same way the Son of Man is going to suffer at their hands.” Then the disciples understood that he was talking to them about John the Baptist.