Scripture: 37 Then Jesus uttered another loud cry and breathed his last. 38 And the curtain in the sanctuary of the Temple was torn in two, from top to bottom. 39 When the Roman officer who stood facing him saw how he had died, he exclaimed, “This man truly was the Son of God!” 40 Some women were there, watching from a distance, including Mary Magdalene, Mary (the mother of James the younger and of Joseph), and Salome. [Mark 15:37-40 NLT] There are some people in life that are special. There is something different about the way they live their life, who they are. They seem to radiate something from deep within that makes them unique and different. You cannot be in their presence without noticing it. In my journey of faith I have been privileged to know a lot of people, but only a very few that fit this category. I am not sure why this is true. It just is. This week I learned that one of these people I have known in my life went to be with Jesus. He was a former president of the college I graduated from and a former professor at the seminary from which I earned my Master of Divinity degree. I met him and his wife through a mutual friend. We only were together a handful of times, but that was enough to know there was something about him. Even though I had not seen him in many years, the lasting impact his life had on mine has certainly outlived his life on earth. I look forward to seeing him in heaven one day. I am sure that you have known someone like this. Someone whose light seems to shine a little brighter and in whom the Holy Spirit seems to overflow. It is these people in our lives that help us to know that our journey is one of divine purpose. God longs to be so evident in all of our lives. God desires for the Holy Spirit to ooze out of every part of our life. This is not just so we will know the power and presence of the Holy Spirit, but so that others might see that there is something about those who choose to follow the Holy Spirit with all of their life. Complete and total surrender to God, the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit is what will bring about this reality in our life. We know this because we have had the greatest example of this the world has ever known in Jesus Christ. In our Scripture for today we see this very clearly. Jesus has gone through his entire life doing the will of the Father, he has performed miracles and taught thousands, he has been arrested and beaten, he has been tortured and hung on a cross to die. Through all of this Jesus claimed he did nothing from his own will but only from the will of God the Father. Jesus surrendered everything totally. In his final hours on this earth Jesus shows everyone who is willing to see what it means to sacrifice everything out of love. Those gathered around while he is being beaten would have seen love in his blood stained eyes. Those watching as he carried the cross to Golgotha would have seen mercy and compassion on his wearied face. Those watching as he was crucified would have seen the love of the One willing to give his life for the forgiveness of sins. This is what the centurion who was charged with guarding him saw. He saw Jesus have mercy on the thief next to him. He saw Jesus make sure that John would take care of his mother. The centurion saw the love and compassion Jesus had on all of humanity as he hung there dying a horrific death. This is what moved the centurion to say, “Surely this man was the Son of God!” There was something about this man that even someone who had sworn allegiance to Caesar could see. There was something about this man, indeed. How has Jesus affected you? Has the reality of the cross transformed you? Have you come to the conclusion that there is something about this man? Something worthy of surrendering your life to Jesus Christ as Lord. Something compelling enough to have you give every moment of your life to follow Jesus. Something empowering enough to motivate you to fulfill God’s purpose for your life through your relationship with Jesus. Today is the day! There is no better time to confess that Jesus is the Son of God and live boldly in the name of Jesus. Live today in such a way that the world will know there is something about this man.
Prayer: Holy and gracious God, you alone are worthy of all my praise. To you alone I surrender my life today and every day. Thank you for creating me just the way I am and for your purpose. Thank you for sending your Son, Jesus, to save me and be the Lord of my life. Thank you for the gift of your Holy Spirit sustaining me through every moment of my life. May I live every moment today for you, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. Amen.