Lou Lotz

Read: John 3:1-10

Now there was a man of the Pharisees named Nicodemus, a ruler of the Jews. (v. 1)

What was Nicodemus’ reaction, do you suppose, to his encounter with Jesus? He does not cry out, like Thomas, “My Lord and my God!” (John 20:28). He does not exclaim, like the centurion at the cross, “Truly this man was the Son of God!” (Mark 15:39). He does not go running back to his village, all excited, like the Samaritan woman, saying, “Can this be the Christ?” (John 4:29). We don’t really know how Nicodemus reacted to his conversation with Jesus, or how his life was changed because of it.

Although Nicodemus does appear again in the Gospels. Twice. Later in John’s Gospel Nicodemus publicly defends Jesus before his fellow Pharisees, saying, “Does our law judge a man without first giving him a hearing and learning what he does?” (7:51). Not exactly a ringing endorsement of Jesus, but at least Nicodemus speaks up. Still later in John’s Gospel we learn that it was Nicodemus who tended to Jesus’ crucified body, “bringing a mixture of myrrh and aloes” (19:39). It is a small gesture, admittedly, but at least Nicodemus does something.

Some people are very gifted and make big contributions to God’s kingdom. But most of us are probably more like Nicodemus. Perhaps you can’t do something big for the kingdom of God, but you can do something. The woods would be very quiet if the only birds that sang were those that sang best. What contribution will you make today? —Lou Lotz

As you pray, ask God to show you what you can do.