Life on Cottage Hill: PAGES

Sunday, October 17, 2010

From Selfish to Selfless

As Jackson takes a power nap I wanted to share with you the inspiration I was given this morning in church- which was all based around the story of Zacchaeus (found in Luke 19:1-11). Zacchaeus (lets call him Zacch), was an itty bitty man in size and yet his ego and greed made the reputation that followed him bigger than life- and not in a good way. This tax collector had no friends and was really off track thanks to the selfish way he lived his life. But as Jesus teaches us, our past need not define our future and so it was his encounter with Jesus that we read about that turned his life around. Taking him from being selfish to selfless.

Zacch met Jesus one day when Jesus was visiting his town. Zacch had climbed way up in a tree to get a glance at Jesus (like I said, he was short!) and when Jesus came to this tree he called to Zacch by name to come down and told him that He would need to stay in Zacch's home that night. The people were shocked- why would Jesus choose to stay with Zacch, such a sinner, such a corrupt, selfish man? But Jesus forgives all who sin. And He reached out to Zacch in love.

Zacch was not used to such genuine love and forgiveness and responded immediately. He immediately spoke with love that he had never felt before and promised out loud in front of Jesus and his town that he would give half of his wealth to the poor and would return to anyone he had stolen from four times the amount. As Jesus said, "today salvation has come to this house." Today, Zacch decided he wanted to change. He made the decision to change. And he did indeed change, turning his life completely around and moving forward as a selfless, hope, love and faith-filled man. 

As we were reminded this morning, each of us is a work in progress in how we live our life, but the point is to keep working at living our lives as closely to how Jesus lived His. The reality is that we will never be perfect and that's okay. We will make mistakes and get off track- and that's okay too as long as we never give up- as long as we keep bettering ourselves in the eyes of The Lord. 

Here are 3 very simple, very practical action steps we can take this week to focus on taking another step towards being selfless:
1. Avoid the "me first" syndrome
2. Intentionally put others first
3. Ask questions of others with sincere interest (aka talk less, listen more)

In closing, one little quote that really touched me this morning was when a man was giving a testimonial about how Jesus had changed his life and he said "it's not about having a religion- it's about having a relationship with God." This 100% stuck home with me because it was this very transition (from having a religion to having a relationship) that is what completely changed my life (and still is changing my life) in the past year since joining our current church community. I grew up having  a religion. But, now, I have a relationship with God and that is what has made ALL the difference. That is what I pray every day I can give to Jackson. 

I wish you the most beautiful day- Jackson, Nanna and I are off to do a walk that will raise funds for those with developmental disabilities (I'll share more on that tonight) and then we are off to celebrate Poppy's birthday! And yes, you guessed it, while we are walking Dan will of course be working on his truck :). 

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