READING: Luke 14-15
TEXTS AND APPLICATION: I’ve always been amazed by how much we celebrate the birth of a baby and how little we celebrate the re-birth of a lost sinner. We sponsor baby showers, give gifts, throw parties, make announcements, and send pictures when a baby is born. When someone is born again, though, we offer a handshake — and perhaps a round of applause.
Compare that approach to the celebrating Jesus described in the three parables in Luke 15:
Luke 15:6 ‘Rejoice with me, because I have found my lost sheep!’
Luke 15:9 ‘Rejoice with me, because I have found the silver coin I lost!’
Luke 15:32 ‘But we had to celebrate and rejoice, because this brother of yours was dead and is alive again; he was lost and is found.’
Celebrate — a lost sinner has come to God. Celebrate — a person destined for hell has been redirected toward heaven. Celebrate — a dying person has been given new life. Sometimes it feels like we're more like the older son in the parable of the prodigal son (upset that we didn't get a party) than like those who celebrated when something lost was found.
It would do us good to celebrate more when salvation is evidenced in front of us. Throw a party (literally). Give good gifts (a new Bible, a devotional, a journal, a Christian CD). Invite others to celebrate, too. Share testimonies.
The grace of God that provides eternal life is worth celebrating.
ACTION STEPS: Consider throwing a party in your home to celebrate God’s grace. Invite a few believers, and ask them to share their salvation stories. Rejoice together — and then go tell others.
PRAYER: “God, thank You for loving me enough to send my friend many years ago to tell me about Jesus. Thank You for allowing me to return to my Creator. Help me to celebrate salvation today.”
TOMORROW’S READING: Luke 16–17:10