Jacob said, ”Lord, I am not worthy of the least of all the steadfast love and all the faithfulness that you have shown to your servant.”  Genesis 32:10.  

Then Jesus said to Zacchaeus, “Today salvation has come to this house, because he too is a son of Abraham.” Luke 19:9

Jacob did not feel worthy of God’s grace and mercy.  Do you know anyone who feels that way?  Should we all feel that way even though we are committed Christians? For some people, feeling unworthy and perhaps weighed down with problems are the very things that lead them to Jesus.  For others (myself included), growing up with the faith tends to make one take it for granted and not question one’s sinfulness.  

In my head I know that I am human and imperfect.  But sometimes, I wonder how bad I am.  What are my sins?  What are the thoughts, actions, attitudes, motives that keep me separated from being ever closer to our Lord?  It is good to examine ourselves, introspective is good and valuable, always remembering the grace of God.  Acknowledge your sins, confess, and know that God loves you anyway.  

It seems to me that as we grow in Christ and become mature Christians, that our focus is on God and his love rather than our sins.  Pastor Engelstad preached love, I remember him saying that he was unable to preach any other way.  Bless his memory.  

Soon it will be February with its focus on the love that we have for partners, children, friends.  Love is a word, a noun, an adverb, a verb. But we all know that love is more than that.  Love comes from the very heart of God to our hearts.  God designed our hearts to be more than a machine that keeps us alive every day of our lives.  Our hearts are at the very center of our being and connected with our deepest emotions and experiences.  There are many references to the heart in the Bible, and each passage speaks of it in relation to thinking and feeling.  

Jacob, God declared you worthy as he did also with Zacchaeus.  As he does with all of us.  Thanks be to God.  Amen.  

Joan Perlich