John’s clothes were made of camel’s hair, and he had a leather belt around his waist. His food was locusts and wild honey. People went out to him from Jerusalem and all Judea and the whole region of the Jordan. Confessing their sins, they were baptized by him in the Jordan River.Matthew 3:4-6 NIV
John the Baptist came to prepare the way of the Lord, announcing the arrival of God’s anointed one. If I had been in John’s place, it is likely that I would have thought Jerusalem would be a better place to make the announcement. And I would probably have tried to make myself more presentable to the people I was trying to reach. I mean, who is going to take you seriously if you are dressed in camel’s hair? But John did neither of those things. He setup out in the wilderness, and he dressed more like Elijah than a respectable preacher. Yet the crowds flocked to him from all over the region, and many confessed their sins and were baptized.
Today it is tempting to appeal to people using the latest in technology and the entertainment world. It is easy to see ourselves as just one voice among many, and trying to out compete the others. But John’s example tells us that so long as the Holy Spirit is leading and working through us, and we are faithful to him, that we do not need to focus so hard on appealing to the crowds. There is nothing wrong with using technology. But the power of our message and appeal should be in the Holy Spirit; not in our professionalism or human appeal. It is the Holy Spirit who calls people to salvation, not our presentation.