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Unleashed: As You Go – Pray

“When Jesus reached the spot, he looked up and said to him, “Zacchaeus, come down immediately. I must stay at your house today.” Luke 19:5
Zacchaeus lived the good life. He had the best things money could buy, lived in one of the biggest houses in town, had political influence, and set his own standard of righteousness. Paul David Tripp says it well; “Here’s the danger for me and for you: sin doesn’t always look sinful to us. It’s hard to admit, but sometimes sin actually looks beautiful to us.” Zacchaeus probably decided sin actually looked pretty nice. Except something was still missing!
That something was a someone. That someone was Jesus. Zacchaeus went out of his way to see Jesus. This dignified yet hated leader of the community did a most undignified thing: he climbed up a tree like some neighborhood kid. This was no small feat considering he was wearing a robe! Did he go out to see the latest buzz star in the country? Maybe, but I don’t think so. Jesus got to the tree, looked up and called him by name. Rock stars don’t stop and call you by name, but a Savior who cares about you, He calls you by name.
While others only saw Zacchaeus as a hated tax collector, Jesus saw his heart. When Jesus called him by name, “he came down at once and welcomed him gladly.” There was no hesitation by Zacchaeus to follow Jesus. There was no hesitation by Zacchaeus to give up everything for the sake of the gospel. There was no hesitation by Zacchaeus to right the wrongs he had done.
Forgiveness is a wonderful thing, but we need more. God not only forgives, but he also gets inside of us by His Spirit. The Spirit that now lives inside us is a warrior Spirit, who by grace does battle with my sin even in moments when I don’t care too.
Jesus looked into the eyes of Zacchaeus and spoke these words of life to him. “Today salvation has come to this house, because this man, too, is a son of Abraham. For the Son of Man came to seek and to save the lost.”
 
Never again did Zacchaeus have to climb a tree to see his Savior. Never again did Zacchaeus live as the outcast in his community. Never again did Zacchaeus see sin as beautiful. Zacchaeus said “yes” to an invitation that would forever change his life. For those who have said “yes” to Jesus’ invitation, life has been changed forever.
Today officially begins our church’s focus on “A Forty Day Journey.” This is a  journey both inward and outward as we seek God’s insight and renewal in our lives. We will read the same scripture passages daily but each of us will receive something different from the passage for our lives. I hope we don’t see the Forty Day Devotions as a program but, rather, as a journey with each other. Spend time soaking in the scripture passage and letting it be a time spent in hearing from God and praying out of the verse(s).
“Be exalted, O God, above the heavens; let Your glory be over all the earth.” Psalm 108:5

God Is Great

Pastor Lynn Burton
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