Focus of the week: Foundational Truths
God promises to give us redemption.
For you shall go out in joy and be led forth in peace; the mountains and the hills before you shall break forth into singing, and the trees of the field shall clap their hands. Instead of the thorn shall come up the cypress; instead of the brier shall come up the myrtle; and it shall make a name for the Lord, an everlasting sign that shall not be cut off. Isaiah 55:12-13
All promises are fulfilled in Christ.
Please read Luke 19:1-10.
I don't know about you but whenever I read the story of Zacchaeus, the familiar "wee little man" lyrics start playing through my head. Can't you envision this short-legged-long-robed man running ahead and climbing a tree in order to get a good look at Jesus in the midst of the upcoming crowd? And then can you imagine his surprise when Jesus called him BY NAME saying, "Zacchaeus, hurry and come down, for I must stay at your house today." Wow! Scripture says that Zaccheus received Jesus into his house with joy.
These verses also tell us that Zacchaeus was a rich tax-collector. He made his money by over-charging the people. His lifestyle was full of deception, and not many people liked him, at all. But then there was Jesus, dining with him at his kitchen table! Something beautiful happened in this One-on-one "lunch hour". Jesus, (God in the flesh), spoke to him Face to face, Heart to heart, and the small man came out of this divine interaction magnificently changed. The cords of deception and ropes of selfish living had been severed by the only One who could do it, and he was free! Reread our passage to see what Zacchaeus did with this new found freedom.
Ladies, He is calling you BY NAME. He wants to sit with you and have a very personal conversation with you. You and I both have different cords of sin that keep us in bondage; but take heart, this is the very reason Jesus WANTS to sit with you. There is no such thing as "having it all together" first. If Jesus was sitting across the table from you right now, He would explain that at the cross, He purchased you with His very own holy blood, a choice-act motivated by His love, and a must-act in order for us to be in His presence. He would go on to say that this Life-for-life transaction covered ALL your sin, and I mean ALL of your sin. He would then encourage you, like He did to Zaccheaus, to expose these sins so He can cut these cords and set you free. He redeems (buys us back) for a purpose.
Let's be today's Zaccheaus. Let's be so intrigued by Jesus that we do something radical in our quest for Him (but maybe not climb a tree!). Then let's hear the Lord personally call us by name. Be delighted and humbled to dine with Him. Feast on His word; engage with his Spirit. Give Him space to speak to you Heart to heart. Believe this: His sacrificial love was the price He paid for you to be His child. The promised Redeemer has come! Let this truth sink in until it changes you. And then run out of your house in freedom, or I should say, get on-line, and tell the world about your personal encounter with God.
For further reading: Isaiah 55:12-13; Isaiah 61:3; 1 Peter 1:18-19; Titus 2:13-14
Thank You for the price you paid to redeem us! We have been bought with Your precious blood, a price so high that nothing in this world can begin to match in value. Therefore, WE are valuable to You! Help us to remember and be awed by the fact that this costly payment was Your plan and that it was motivated by steadfast love. We mean that much to You...so much so that You would choose to dine with us every single day, all the time. Jesus, may we receive You with joy. Amen.