God’s word expressly declared John the Baptist a servant who came to prepare the way for Jesus. John understood this. In fact, he declared that he was not worthy to untie the sandals of the One coming after him. However, this was the immediate manifestation of that word:
Mark 1:5 | “The whole Judean countryside and all the people of Jerusalem went out to him. Confessing their sins, they were baptized by him in the Jordan River.”
God’s word declared John a servant, but its manifestation was popularity among his countrymen. Unfortunately, John got carried away by the popularity. He kept baptizing even after Jesus had started His ministry. (John 3:22-23) And eventually challenged Jesus by asking if He was the One or whether they should expect another? (Matthew 11:3) Sowing doubts in the hearts of his followers on Jesus’s identity as the Messiah.
Well, it didn’t end well for John. His head got served on a platter to a small girl. Do this always: fix your eyes on God’s words to you, whether it takes you to the desert or brings you popularity. Bliss be with you.