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“And when Jesus came to the place, he looked up, and saw him, and said unto him, Zacchaeus, make haste, and come down; for to day I must abide at thy house.”

Zacchaeus was known as a villain in his community. People probably dreaded to see him knock on their door or come near them.

As the chief tax collector and a wealthy man, he was known to take more money than he should.

However, he had a divine appointment with Jesus that changed everything. After Jesus visited his home, he returned four times the amount that he took from others.

He repented and became a person that gave to the poor.

A new year gives us new opportunities to live for God.

The year 2021 may be the most anticipated year of our lifetime. Many are eager to say goodbye to 2020 and are hoping for a return to normalcy. Will we finally get to take off the masks and forget about COVID-19? At some point, will the national turmoil simmer down and peace return? Or will the New Year be another ride on the roller coaster of madness?

We need to return to the Lord as a nation and stop drifting in the wrong direction.

Whatever the future holds, we can determine our course in life and the ultimate outcome. God can help us make the changes needed for a prosperous year.

Jesus may be making plans to visit our homes. He stands at the door and knocks, according to the Bible (Rev. 3:20).

Zacchaeus’ reputation or sinful lifestyle didn’t deter Jesus from reaching out to him. The tax collector opened the door and was willing to listen to the Lord. Will we “open the door” to Jesus this year? Instead of making our plans for the New Year, let’s inquire about God’s plans for us.

As always, he desires to give us a peaceful and prosperous year. He can straighten out our lives and put the broken pieces back together.

This comes about by making him Lord and savior as we follow his word. Zacchaeus’ life completely changed for the better. Ours can as well as we follow Christ and put him first.

Ralph and Elizabeth Pyszkowski, your brother and sister In Christ. All comments are welcomed at rpyszkow@gmail.com.