John 3:22-24 (NIV): After this, Jesus and his disciples went out into the Judean countryside, where he spent some time with them, and baptized. Now John also was baptizing at Aenon near Salim, because there was plenty of water, and people were constantly coming to be baptized. (This was before John was put in prison.)
Even though the Messiah had come and was actively ministering, John continued to work his ministry. Many wonder why, but the simple answer is, God had not told him to stop, or to do something different.
John was the kind of person that is hard for people today to relate to. Many people pick out strong personality traits in John, such as His ability and willingness to speak the truth clearly and without compromise; his boldness in speaking even to kings, and his individuality, continuing on in his work no matter what others thought, and because of those traits, they believe that he was a rugged, powerful, independent kind of guy. But over all of that was John’s meekness before God. He was always 100% attentive to God’s voice, and 100% obedient to His every command.
In this way John was very much like Jesus. Even though Jesus was God in the flesh, He never decided on His own what to do or where to go (cf. John 5:19). If God told Him to do something, He kept doing it until He was done, or until He received new instructions. The last direction that God had given John was to go and baptize all that came to Him, and to preach about the Messiah. The people were still coming, and he hadn’t yet received additional or different instructions, so he kept his ears open, and kept carrying out his task with all that he had to give it.
John’s days were short; he suspected that they would be. But he never complained or asked for more or better things to do. He knew that God was moving His program forward, and that what He was doing, regardless of how minor it might seem to others, was playing a role in the ultimate fulfillment of God’s plan.
Father, help me, help us all, to be like John. Help us to be so committed to You and to Your agenda that we waste no time worrying or wondering how our part fits into the whole; that we waste no time looking for the next thing, but simply focus on the thing You have given us to do right now. We can trust that, if we are faithful and attentive, You will guide us to the next thing when it’s time, and that You will help us to do our absolute best until then. Help us to always keep our focus on You and your agenda, as good and faithful servants. Amen.