Day 47: (4:24) the road ahead

27 04 2011

4:24: the road ahead

I cannot believe No, I can believe… that I am this late in posting my Easter photo–the final photo for “Journey to 4:24”. I took the photo on Sunday, and yet, here I sit… Wednesday morning, posting. Oh well. That said, here’s my post.

Easter is the ultimate example of hope, of life, of possibility. It is God’s unimaginable love for us, reconciling himself to humanity through Jesus Christ. It is God forgiving our sin, and giving us life, so we can live abundantly.

Easter is about the road ahead, full of possibility. Let us live into that hope-filled life, empowered by the empty tomb. (Even when we’re running behind.)

Fisher Price Prodigals

12 03 2010

son #1: in the back of the pick up truck, face turned away…can’t believe he took this drive with his father today… he just went along because he was bored, and now he has to witness this occasion…

Fri., March 12th

son #2: a daughter, in this case… can’t believe that her father saw her from the pick up truck, and didn’t turn around and drive back to the house. Can’t believe her father is running out to greet her.Can’t believe her father hasn’t even asked her where she’s been, or where the money is.. can’t believe how much her father loves her.

dog: not in the original parable, at least not divulged, if there. But I think she belongs in the Fisher Price edition of the Prodigals.

father: jumped out of the truck to greet the daughter, after driving down the long driveway everyday for years, looking for his daughter. Can’t believe his daughter is back. Sad that his son is staying in the back of the truck.

The prodigals: prodigal #1 is the daughter, who’s been known as the prodigal… prodigal #2 is the father. The word prodigal means a reckless spendthrift, an extravagant spendthrift. The father is the true prodigal because his unexpected, counter-cultural response to his daughter’s return is prodigal behavior.

“Zacchaeus, I used to like you!”

20 11 2007

I’ve always liked Zacchaeus—until today. I think I would still like him, had I not been asked, by an online prayer site, to think how I would feel if I were in the crowd, and had been one of those angered at Zacchaeus for his unethical tax practices. Apparently, I have identified with Zacchaeus in the past, and not with the crowd: I have loved this passage because it speaks to the love, grace and forgiveness that happens only through Jesus Christ. I have been grateful for that love, grace and forgiveness, and wanted to give that to others. I’ve probably preached on this text, or read devotionals, and commentaries… and encouraged others to respond in love and forgiveness.

Yet today, I’m part of the crowd. I’m angry, and grumbling at the Zacchaeus’ in my life, who knowingly mistreat me and those I love. And, I’m kind of mad at Jesus, too, for going to Zacchaeus’ house—doesn’t Jesus want to hear my story first? Don’t I get to tell Zacchaeus what I think of him and his tax practices?

But we aren’t the judges of that, either. I am not saying that we need to automatically release Zacchaeus from responsibility, and go on as if nothing happened. Proper and just procedures need to happen to hold people accountable. But I am saying that whether the Zacchaeus’ in our lives have a turn of heart or not, we are called to forgive. (not necessarily trust again, but forgive) I am called to forgive, and to let go of the grumbling long enough to see Zacchaeus through Jesus’ eyes.

I should say that I still like Zacchaeus—after all, I have been Zacchaeus to many other people over the years. But today, I feel like I’m in the crowd. Help me, Lord, to see the Zacchaeus’ of life through your eyes. Help me to forgive. And help me to remember that you have also forgiven me.