In the game “Apples to Apples” the dealer turns up a topic card – a card that has an idea on it, like “Fun.” You then toss in cards you have that you feel match the topic. For instance, if you have a card that says “Pancakes,” you might toss that in for “Fun” because eating pancakes can be fun.
Few, if any, of the cards are even related to the topic, let alone perfect matches. Part of the fun of the game, then, is trying to convince the dealer that what you offered is worth choosing as the closest match. You hope your decision becomes the dealer’s decision as well.
Today’s passage is a return to John and the prayer that Jesus offered before being arrested. He has been praying for his disciples. Now who is he praying for? What does he desire?
In this time of stress and anticipation, this time before going to the Garden of Gethsemane and struggling with the ultimate decision he had to make, Jesus took the time to offer prayer to God for his followers. He wanted God to strengthen them and to bless their efforts. He wanted the disciples to have success in living out their ministry.
But his prayer extended out beyond those closest few at his side. His prayer expanded to include all who would hear the message of the resurrection. His prayer was that all who heard the story of Christ would believe, would embrace it, and would become as one in spirit with all others who believed.
The prayer Jesus prayed was for you.
Jesus prayed that you would hear the Gospel story and believe. He prayed that you would embrace the love God has and that you would choose to share that message. Jesus prayed that your faith would allow you to impact the faith of others, that lost souls might be rescued.
Our faith can become like the game. Jesus made a decision. He made a choice. Now, we must make a decision to believe and serve him or not. If we choose to serve him, then we can influence others in their decisions.
Your garden decision, your choice to do the good work of God’s kingdom and share the good news of who Jesus is and what he did, will influence others. Because of your choice, others will also need to make a decision of their own. Will they accept Christ? If they do, will they choose to serve him?
DAILY CHALLENGE: Who needs to know the choice you have made?