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Sunday’s Monday

I have a silly yet serious question to pose to you. How many times have you found yourself killing time in a store looking for nothing and inevitably, you come away disappointed because nothing pleased you? We became fault finders, complaining about everything that did not suit our whims. This is not an uncommon situation for many of us, yet it proves a biblical truth, we all carry an underlying hidden “self-indulging” intent behind our motivation, or we would find ourselves killing time at a hospital, gym, jail, or cemetery. Truth is! Anytime we lose sight of our needs, we will instinctively focus on our worldly wants, which are not always good for us. Fact is, when we have no expectations, we are seldom satisfied with any outcome. Zacchaeus was expectant in Luke 19:2-4 (NLT), 2 There was a man there named Zacchaeus. He was the chief tax collector in the region, and he had become very rich. 3 He tried to get a look at Jesus, but he was too short to see over the crowd. 4 So he ran ahead and climbed a sycamore-fig tree beside the road, for Jesus was going to pass that way.

This question should be posed first and foremost in every church gathering we have. Why am I here? Which should set off a firestorm of questions roaring through our minds. Such as: What am I expecting to receive? Will I cooperate with the Holy Spirit? Did I leave my agenda at the door? All very insightful and highly necessary for a strong, solid visit with Jesus. Make a mental note here; Honesty is imperative to have joy in this life. The correct answers should sound something like this: I expect to see the Holy Spirit at His best today, working diligently on my behalf. I expect God’s Holy Spirit to move within me and I expect to become more energized and stronger in my faith in Jesus. I expect to hear God say, “I love you, my child.” Now that’s church! No structure, crowd, or position is necessary, church is me and God! Our desire should be to love God enough, that words aren’t necessary for the world to notice. Look at Zacchaeus, he came expecting, and as we are told in Luke 19:5-6 (NLT), 5 When Jesus came by, he looked up at Zacchaeus and called him by name. “Zacchaeus!” he said. “Quick, come down! I must be a guest in your home today,” Zacchaeus was not disappointed. This man purposed his actions to catch the eye of Jesus and to please Him!

Unfortunately, for many that seldom if ever happens because they arrive with empty expectations and depart just as empty. Many are missing Jesus by choice! They either feel they are good enough or they don’t feel comfortable in His presence because they are lax in obedience. Ergo when they pray it’s not usually in the form of a conversation, it is more like a phone call, they avoid discussions with God by leaving a voice mail containing their request and simply wait on God to do what God does. These are usually the ones you hear complaining God never talks to me. We (all of us) on our best day have no understanding of what God is doing for or to us and that scares some stiff. So, being the intelligent critters we are, we figure to limit how much influence God has on us by partially cooperating with His will. We minimize our exposure to all things leading to a mature intimate relationship with Him. Although this may seem to be working for some, their joy is an illusion. As intelligent critters, this should be JOY 101! Read Philippians 2:13 for an explanation.

The bible has stories throughout its pages of those who believed and yet were lost to His goodness. Take sowing and reaping (Galatians 6:7-10), giving large offerings (Mark 12:41-44), Pretty prayers (Matthew 6:5), all good for outward appearances yet spiritually worthless without a real, heart to heart relationship with Jesus! As my pastor preaches, far too many people have merely bought holy fire insurance, they accepted Jesus as Lord, confessed their sins, and partially repented which has saved them from the flames of hell and they feel like that’s good enough. They’re not communing daily with Jesus and at best have a touch-and-go relationship with Him. If this life teaches us anything, it should be that doing nothing in most situations is a very dangerous position to take! As Luke alludes to in Luke 19:22-23 (NLT), 22 “You wicked servant!’ the king roared. ‘Your own words condemn you. If you knew that I’m a hard man who takes what isn’t mine and harvests crops I didn’t plant, 23 why didn’t you deposit my money in the bank? At least I could have gotten some interest on it.” Oftentimes, safe is merely a myth of Satan that can cost one everything!

Lord, forgive those who become so overwhelmed with themselves, that they are completely complacent with who and where they are. Lord guard us against losing our purpose, ambition, and goals to please you in everything we do. Jesus, please light our fire for you and bring us back to Luke 19:48 (NLT), But they could think of nothing because all the people hung on every word he said. May “we” your people once again become enamored with you, your words, and your leading. Split our seams Lord with praise for you. Amen


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