Jesus often broke social conventions to be in relationship with people.
When Jesus initiated a pathway to change for a hated and wealthy tax collector named Zacchaeus, He intentionally risked his reputation by openly engaging him and going to his home.
In Luke 19:1-10, Jesus talked with Zacchaeus about Zacchaeus’s heritage and future. People, especially the religious leaders, publicly scorned Jesus for His open connection with this enemy of the people. However, the approach Jesus used caused Zacchaeus to lower his defenses and receive Jesus’s counsel. Zacchaeus ended up repenting for his wicked ways and making a radical commitment to return the money he had stolen from the people.
Jesus and the religious leaders started on the same side in their initial assessment of Zacchaeus’s behavior as wrong and in need of change. What is striking, though, is how both parties responded.
The religious leaders only cared about correcting the behavior. Jesus cared about the person. And caring about the person made all the difference.
Reflect + Pray
1. Who in your life is challenging your social conventions with relationship? Ask God what He wants your relationship to them to be, and follow His lead.
2. Ask the Lord to convict you of ways in which your concern for reputation may be superseding your love for others.
3. Reflect on God’s abundant love and compassion. Consider how He has been gracious to you, and ask Him for specific ways you might extend that compassion to others today.
4. Please continue to pray for The Foursquare Church’s presidential selection process. Ask God to guide the hearts of everyone involved as we select new leadership.
Share your thoughts. See comments below, and add your own.