I recently created a 14-day devotional booklet for my church called “Supplying Every Need.” We’re using it to prepare for our upcoming Stewardship Commitment Sunday on November 8. I will be posting a devotional each day between now and then. Enjoy!
Scripture: Luke 19:1-10
Christmas season will soon be upon us. One of my favorite holiday traditions is re-watching my favorite Christmas movies and TV specials, including How the Grinch Stole Christmas!
Zacchaeus, in today’s scripture, is a real-life Grinch. He’s a tax collector, the most hated man in Palestine. Like the Grinch, he literally stole from other people—and because he had the army of the Roman Empire backing him up, the people he stole from were helpless to do anything about it.
Jesus, however, like the Whos in Who-ville, loves this Grinch and invites him share a meal with him.
Even more importantly, Jesus invites Zacchaeus into a saving relationship with God. And like the Grinch, Zacchaeus repents and gives back all that he’s stolen—and then some. “Today,” Jesus says of Zacchaeus, “salvation has come to this house.”
It’s easy to see that just as the Grinch’s life was transformed by the love of the Whos, so Zacchaeus’s life was transformed by the life-changing love of Jesus Christ. And one symptom of this change was Zacchaeus’s newfound generosity.
Has your life been transformed by the love of God through Christ? Has salvation come to your house?
If so, this is the best reason to be generous in our financial giving: because God has been generous with us. God didn’t spare his Son but gave him up in order to save us. “Though he was rich, yet for your sake he became poor, so that you through his poverty might become rich” (2 Corinthians 8:9).
If, like Zacchaeus in today’s scripture, you’re ready to receive God’s gift of salvation in Christ, begin by praying this prayer:
Almighty God, I confess to you that like Zacchaeus, I am a sinner in need of your forgiveness. I know that because of my sins I deserve nothing better than death and hell. But I also know that you loved me too much to leave me this way. I am sorry for my sins and with your help I am turning away from them now. I believe that your Son Jesus is Lord. I believe that through Jesus—through his death on the cross and through his resurrection from the dead—you are offering me forgiveness and eternal life. Enable me to receive that gift now. I promise, by your grace and power, to be a faithful follower of Jesus for the rest of my life—in this world and in the world to come. In Jesus’ name I pray. Amen.
If you prayed this prayer, please let me or someone else know. I would love to help you as you begin this journey as a disciple of Jesus Christ.