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Lost and Found (Luke 19:1-10)

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There are no black sheep to God – just people who have taken up His welcome, and people who haven’t. There is nobody who has left it too late after leaving Jesus behind in childhood. Nobody who has gone too far in the path they’ve walked in life for Jesus to call for them.

The gospel frees us from: Perfectionism (Philippians 3:4b-14)

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How many perfectionists does it take to change a lightbulb? Well, only one – but it will take them a very long time. First of all, they’ll notice the lightbulb needs changed. They’ll build it up as a big deal – there is this task to be done that must be done as well as possible.
Maybe they’ll look around for the most efficient type of bulb to replace this one. Then they’ll look around for the best price. Then they’ll buy the new bulb, and go ahead and change it. Whilst they’re up there, they’ll give the light a good dusting, and get the lampshade as straight as they can. Then they’ll evaluate it all. They’ll ponder whether they’ve bought the best bulb that they could have, and also wonder what others think about their bulb-changing performance.

Why keep praying? (Luke 18:1-8)

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Let me tell you what I’m not competent to do: I can’t explain to you why God says yes or no to any given prayer; or what His purposes are in the timing of His answers (which very often come about after a far longer time than fits our expectations of an acceptable RSVP). Like everyone else, I can’t do more than speculate about that, and I’ve found that to be a pretty useless exercise.
What I hopefully can do is what I’m called to do: Share with you what God says in His Word about prayer, and how He would have us shape our lives in the light of that. And here in Luke 18:1-8, Jesus unambiguously teaches us to ‘always pray and not give up.’ The point of the parable is spelled out right there in v.1, before the parable’s even spoken: Be persistent.