For the Son of Man came to seek and to save the lost. (Luke 19:10 NIV)
Friend to Friend
I raced through the mall with an oversized stroller. Two children tucked in tight. One on the loose. My son had been by my side seconds earlier. I turned around and he was gone.
I called out to anyone who would listen. “Have you seen my son? He’s about this high,” I said, holding my hand just so.
Ten minutes later I found him. He had made it to the other side of the mall and was happily sitting on a bench, swinging his little legs. My son hadn’t even known he was lost. My heart rate was at an all-time high. I scooped him up and held him tight.
When Jesus found Zacchaeus in the branches of a tree, He was also looking for a lost son.
Zacchaeus was living the high life of a tax collector. He had climbed the Sycamore tree out of curiosity. The fact that Jesus was coming through town was big news.
I wonder what Zacchaeus thought as he swayed in those upper branches, watching as Jesus left the crowd to come his way. I wonder if he tried to hide when Jesus stood at the base of the tree and called Zacchaeus to come down. I wonder how he felt when the crowd loudly criticized Jesus, asking, “Why would you eat with such a sinner?”
Jesus never took his eyes off Zacchaeus, and his answer to the crowd was simple.
“For the Son of Man came to seek and to save the lost” (Luke 19:10 NIV).
Jesus had been seeking Zacchaeus. He knew he was lost. Jesus was offering more than a meal. He was offering relationship, redemption, and restoration and that encounter transformed Zacchaeus.
When we drift from our faith for whatever reason, it can feel painful. We might not know how to find our way back. We may believe we’ve gone too far or that we’ve made too many mistakes. We may hear the voices of those who criticize, saying, “Why would Jesus bother with you?”
Well, the answer is simple.
Jesus came to seek and save those who are lost.
You. Me. The world.
He seeks those who are directionless. He seeks those who feel they’ve gone too far. He seeks those who may not realize how lost they are. The word seek means to pursue, which means that Jesus is willing to go the distance, to look in the highways, byways, and hedges, and to look until the lost is found.
If you’ve felt lost in your faith, I want you to know this: Jesus is seeking you because He loves you. Like Zacchaeus, do you hear Him calling your name today?
You’ve been found, my friend.
Let’s not listen to those who say our mistakes are too big. Instead, let’s listen to those who remind us God’s grace is bigger.
Encountering Jesus is what changes us. Walking with Him daily is the plan.
He looks for us, and when we say “yes” to His invitation, He welcomes us gladly. And that truth changes us forever.
Jesus, I’ve been lost and today I’m found. I can spend the rest of my life looking back at how lost I was, or I can rejoice that You never stopped looking for me. Thank You for that.
In Jesus’ Name, Amen.
Now It’s Your Turn
Do you remember a time you lost something precious? Describe how you felt when you found it.
Your Heavenly Father feels the same way about you.
If you’ve been found today, tell someone who loves you and who has been praying for you.
More from the Girlfriends
In Suzie’s book, JoyKeeper: 6 Truths That Change Everything You Thought You Knew About Joy, she invites you to explore key joy stealers and how to exchange them with JoyKeeper truths that change your heart and your faith.
One joy stealer is the belief that our shame is greater than God’s goodness. Discover how to meet shame with truth and how that changes your faith journey.
JoyKeeper includes interactive portions to help you go deeper in your faith. It also includes a 30-day devotional in the back of the book that will help you put joykeeping truths into practice every single day.
© 2021 by Suzanne Eller. All rights reserved.
(As an Amazon Associate, Girlfriends in God earns a small commission from qualifying purchases using this paid link.)
Thanks, so much for your interpretation of the Zacchaeus story.
I’m working through some spiritual issues with Jesus, I’m so glad that no matter where our walk with Him is….He is always keeping a check on us.
I just have to realize He is my guide. Jesus is the one, to rely on to help us climb out of the tangled mess we’re in or walk out of the confusion of darkness, into His light.
I’m opening the Bible to this passage this am. Thank you for this blessing.
He is the only one. I love that you are leaning into that truth. So strong!
Good morning Suzie
The story of Zacchaeus is one of my favorites! We used to sing about him in CCD class when I was a kid. But studying this encounter as an adult is an even greater treasure. Thank you for sharing your thoughts about Jesus and Zacchaeus today. I love to think of myself as being found by Jesus
Wow,such a timely message of bringing me back to the basics of my Christian faith. Fall is my favorite time of year because to me this season represents shedding my old leaves (ways and attitude),preparing me for growth. When circumstances arise,when worry and anxiety creep in I feel as though my Christian walk becomes complacent, even empty to where I go through the motions and neglect to really dig deep into what I’m being taught. Its in these times that I tend to recluse myself and have my own pity party (party of one).
Today I’m reminded just how much God loves his people like no other love imagineable. It is my duty to step out and seek ways to share the love of god. All battles belong to God,everyone has battles they are fighting,AND in Gods eyes everyone deserves redemption through the blood of Jesus regardless of the sin.
My pity party has come to an end, I choose to shine Gods light in the darkness of my life and that of the world “Gods Grace is Bigger” indeed!
Debbie, what a beautiful, honest statement of faith. Love, love it so much!
Jesus, I’m keeping this Joy, my Messiah! The kingdom is likened that pearl the whole neighborhood still sweeps thoroughly to find!