Habakkuk 1:1-4, 2:1-4, Psalm 119:137-44, 2 Thessalonians 1:1-4, 11-12, Luke 19:1-10
Habakkuk 1:1-4, 2:1-4:
- I can relate to Habakkuk's words here from the oracle: a great sense of frustration at what is going on in the world, and a desire that God would somehow just swoop in and make things right. When I look around at the injustices today, the oppression, the evil, even evil perpetrated in God's name, I can cry, "How long?"
- "Justice never prevails . .. judgment comes forth perverted." Again, I can't help but reflect on the timeliness of this reading. The feeling that everything has somehow been skewed.
- And God's comforting response: "there is still a vision for the appointed time . . . if it seems to tarry, wait for it; it will surely come, it will not delay." Ok, God, I'll wait.
- A short little segment from a very long psalm...
- In this section: righteousness, righteousness, and more righteousness.
- The servant of God delights in God's words and commandments, unlike 'foes' who forget or reject God's word. Fairly straight-forward.
- This selection is in encouragement of the church at Thessalonia - a little pep talk, of sorts, giving them praise for their faithfulness and no doubt encouraging continuing faithfulness in the process.
- "the love of everyone of you for one another is increasing." Is this true of you? How do you increase your love of others?
- Ok - I cannot read this passage about Zacchaeus without, in my head, singing the catchy, though language-problematic Sunday School song, "Zacchaeus was a wee little man..." Now, I wince at the potentially hurtful language, but I have to admit that I know the story by heart...
- grumble, grumble. Didn't anyone get it? How many meals did Jesus have to share with unlovables and sinners, how many times did he have to directly say that he was intentional about the company he kept for people to get what he was talking about and why it was important?
- But it is Zacchaeus who is most affected by Jesus' show of love: "Half of my possessions, Lord, i will give to the poor . . . I will pay back four times as much." Even on our most 'righteous' days, do we commit as much?
- "The Son of Man came to seek out and save the lost." There, Jesus saying straight out again, clearly and concisely, his purpose.