Luke Series The Time Is Now

Day 1 of 7 • This day’s reading

Devotional

Give God Praise!

How do you approach Jesus? Do you find yourself reticent to enter into his presence? Or is it a joyful, exuberant experience? When my children were young, they would run to me when I arrived home from work each day, shouting, “Dad’s home!” They would start jumping on me and hugging me. 

Zacchaeus, a grown man, has such a strong desire to see Jesus that he runs ahead of a crowd and climbs a tree to get a glimpse of Jesus. As Jesus is starting down the Mount of Olives on a young donkey, his friends and disciples greet him with shouts of praise. They had heard him teach and had seen the miracles he performed and can’t resist proclaiming, “Blessed is the king who comes in the name of the Lord! Peace in heaven and glory to God” (v. 38). 

With what level of excitement and determination do we pursue encounters with Jesus? When we get to know Jesus intimately, and see him working in our lives, we will not be able to resist praising him. Each personal encounter with Jesus changes us. Just as Zacchaeus, after being in the presence of Jesus, was radically changed from being a greedy tax collector to being a disciple, we too will find our hearts radically changed when we intentionally find ways to have regular fellowship with Jesus. 

After all, it does not matter whether we come to God as little children do, full of excitement and exuberance; or as Zacchaeus did, desperately trying to see him; or as Jesus’s friends and disciples did, with shouts of praise. What is important is that we make time to be with him and praise him for what he has done, for what he is currently doing, and for what he will do. Praise him intentionally and wholeheartedly–you will see that the ordinary will become extraordinary with him.

Reflect

How have you seen God at work in your life in recent weeks? What stories can you share with a family member or friend today? 

Pray

Lord Jesus, my heart overflows with love for you. Help me to praise you in whatever season I find myself. 

Respond

Take time to praise God for sending Jesus to be our Savior. 

Lord God, my ordinary days become extraordinary when I spend time with you. Give me the eyes to see you at work in my life. 

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