On July 21, 2013, media outlets worldwide held their collective breath as they waited for the birth of the child of Prince William and Kate Middleton. The baby was third in line to the British throne, and so when Prince George was born the next day there was hardly a newspaper or news program that didn’t herald the announcement front and center.

A star would pay the Creator homage (Matthew 2:9), angels would call out in worship, “Glory to God in highest heaven” (Luke 2:14), and shepherds and wise men would travel from afar to give Jesus the glory and gifts that He deserved (Matthew 2:11; Luke 2:15-16). But before Jesus was born, another baby entered the world. That baby would grow to be the man called by God to announce His message of repentance and to prepare the way for the coming King. As we read in Luke 1, an angel heralds not only Jesus’ birth, but also the birth of the prophet John the Baptist (Luke 1:17). While in his mother’s womb, John would leap with joy as Jesus—while in Mary’s womb—came close to him (Luke 1:41).

Later as a man, John began a ministry that would pave the way for the greatest King the world would ever know. But while John made his own headlines, he ultimately came to realize the true identity of Jesus and to proclaim that He was the Messiah. All will bow to this King—stars and angels, shepherds and wise men. As Paul wrote, “Christ will be revealed from heaven . . . the King of all kings and Lord of all lords” (1 Timothy 6:15).

Christmas stands as a vivid reminder of Jesus’ identity as the King of Kings. May we prepare the way for others to bow before this King as we proclaim His good news this Christmas.

NLT 365-day reading plan passage for today: 1 Thessalonians 4:1-18