RISING ABOVE YOUR LIMITATIONS
Beloved friends, it’s another day; and I am pleased to come and preach, to bring you the Good New of our LORD JESUS CHRIST. It’s been a great experience receiving calls from people encouraging us to continue these messages. May the Name of the LORD be praised; may HIS Name be worshiped; may HE alone be glorified – WHO has given us this skill and ability to bring the Word of GOD in texts. Blessed be HIS Name…in the Name of JESUS CHRIST.
Today, we will be speaking on, Rising Above Your Limitations.
RISING ABOVE YOUR LIMITATIONS
And we will be reading from Luke 19:1-10.
Then Jesus entered and passed through Jericho. 2 Now behold, there was a man named Zacchaeus who was a chief tax collector, and he was rich. 3 And he sought to see who Jesus was, but could not because of the crowd, for he was of short stature. 4 So he ran ahead and climbed up into a sycamore tree to see Him, for He was going to pass that way. 5 And when Jesus came to the place, He looked up and saw him, and said to him, “Zacchaeus, make haste and come down, for today I must stay at your house.” 6 So he made haste and came down, and received Him joyfully. 7 But when they saw it, they all complained, saying, “He has gone to be a guest with a man who is a sinner.”
8 Then Zacchaeus stood and said to the Lord, “Look, Lord, I give half of my goods to the poor; and if I have taken anything from anyone by false accusation, I restore fourfold.”
9 And Jesus said to him, “Today salvation has come to this house, because he also is a son of Abraham; 10 for the Son of Man has come to seek and to save that which was lost.”
Shall we pray.
Heavenly FATHER, we thank YOU for a day like this, and pray O GOD that YOU will give my readers understanding, and grant YOUR servant unhindered utterance. LORD, let the entrance of YOUR Word give light to YOUR people…in JESUS’ Mighty Name we pray. Amen!
Rising above your limitations
We bring you good news. The Gospel of our LORD JESUS is good news to any person – man, woman, boys and girls, rich and poor, worker and student. Today’s good news is that you can rise above your limitations. Any person can rise above his or her limitations. In fact, you can only be limited because of your rejection of JESUS CHRIST or ignoring HIM completely. However we came to tell you that our Master The LORD JESUS CHRIST is the One that can raise you out of your limitations. That’s good news! Many of us are familiar with crowds that will not allow any person to see the centre of attraction. It’s even common in these days of electioneering campaign.
Our text introduces us to a city called Jericho. It happened that JESUS came to Jericho and the crowd was great. Tall people had difficulties seeing JESUS, not to talk of Zacchaeus who the bible describes as being of short stature.
The bible highlights the limitations of Zacchaeus:
- He was of short stature.
When you are of short stature you cannot do anything about it, because that’s how you are made – that’s how you are created. You can bleach your skin. In these days you can alter your gender, but I have not heard of any person altering his height: changing his height. You live with it.
And that’s the limitation Zacchaeus had.
- Secondly, though he was rich…the bible says he was rich. The people knew the source of his wealth. So he had no reputation among his people. He was looked down upon. It was unlike our own society where we celebrate cheats, fraudulent people, dubious characters. That does not happen in sane societies. Here in our country cheats and corrupt people enter politics and rule us.
Zacchaeus had a limitation: though he was rich; but he had no reputation among his people. He was looked down upon because of his character.
- Thirdly, Zacchaeus had an ambition or a goal. He wanted to see JESUS, but his stature posed a limitation.
How many are like Zacchaeus? You have physical limitations, unable to do what you want to do, family background hinders you, you are born in a poor family? How many people by the way were born in rich families? You have mistakes of old hanging over your life: failures, fears, health challenges. Generally we all have limitations of bad governance in our land. Maybe your limitation is self-imposed: pride, arrogance, anger, stubbornness, domineering spirit, unteachable attitude, self-willed, unforgiveness, not trustworthy. Maybe you have dabbled into immorality and sexual sins; you are full of abusive words and disrespect. These days, young people are into drug abuse and alcohol. I speak to you, drugs and alcohol are destroying our youths. If Zacchaeus overcame his limitations you too can if you so desire.
Yes – you can through our LORD JESUS CHRIST. Only HIM can do what no man can do. Zacchaeus developed an idea of how he could see JESUS. Many of us do not want to go far in seeking JESUS and HIS blessings. If you want to have an impact from JESUS you must seek HIM sincerely and deliberately. How many visit all kinds of prayer houses and places of unquestionable reputation, even shrines, claiming they are seeking GOD? You prefer to visit the so-called prophet who takes you to the river to wash your sins away than to seek JESUS genuinely. We do not need to narrate to you what people pass through in seeking to rise above their limitations. Each time you make such a visit to an unquestionable place you enter into a covenant that will further hinder you and in most cases affect your progenitors – your offsprings.
Today we present to you the SON of GOD, JESUS CHRIST. HE has the answer to your limitations. In The Old Testament, Hannah had a limitation. She was barren. She went to the temple. When others left after one religious ceremony she stayed behind to sort things out with GOD. Limitations should draw you nearer to GOD who has the answer. But alas! To some people they run from pillar to post. Some have done what they even regret today. Others have gone to places they ordinarily would not have gone. Today our LORD JESUS is a very present help.
In Psalm 46:1, GOD is a very present help in trouble. Zacchaeus was not liked by his people. He was a collaborator with the Roman Government. He took advantage of his people. He was corrupt and fraudulent. He was a thief. But he wanted to see JESUS. He overcame his limitations. He would have resigned to fate. But he got an idea. You know, a simple idea can give you a breakthrough in life if you respond to that idea: that GOD-given idea. Zacchaeus got an idea. He saw a sycamore tree ahead of the crowd. He ran and he located the sycamore fig tree on the road. He climbed it in order to see JESUS. His action paid off.
When JESUS arrived there HE stopped and HE said to Zacchaeus, “Come down. Today take me to your house.” The people were surprised. What was happening? A Holy man going to the house of a cheat, a thief and a traitor? They could not believe their ears – but it happened. JESUS went to the house of Zacchaeus.
What JESUS will do in your life will attract public attention. People will not believe it but it will be real. When HE delivers you from affliction, delivers you from drug abuse, delivers you from sickness and renews you and repairs your image, people will not believe it.
In the house of Zacchaeus the stage was set for a new thing. Zacchaeus voluntarily began to make confession and showed remorse for his cheating and corruption. Zacchaeus was sorry for his lifestyle. When you confess your sins JESUS will forgive you. Zacchaeus not only confessed his sins, but committed himself to a new way of living. He committed himself to restitution.
Let me begin to conclude this message. In the Book of Proverbs 28:13, the Bible says,
He who covers his sin will not prosper, but whoever confesses and forsakes them will have mercy.
Listen to me, friend, you cannot make progress with GOD by hiding your sins or concealing them; neither am I calling you to make a public confession or confess to me. Rather I will give you opportunity to make confession of your sins to GOD through our LORD JESUS CHRIST. Notice that Zacchaeus got more than he bargained. He wanted to see JESUS. He saw HIM and got a new life.
Zacchaeus is a Greek Name. It means pure – innocent. Some people have good names but bad character. But today you will have a change. History has it that Zacchaeus ended up a bishop. GOD will change your life. GOD will alter your life. GOD will remove your limitations. GOD will give you a new life and a new personality. The bible says, if any man is in CHRIST he is a new creation, old things are passed away; behold all things are become new. JESUS will remove your limitations. JESUS will heal you – heal your physical body. JESUS will help you chart a new way of life. You will enter into your purpose for your life. You will have new and responsible friends. HE will reveal HIS will for you; and HE will rebuild your life.
Let us pray.
Heavenly FATHER, as many as have heard YOUR Word and are responding to it by confessing their sins, by making a decision and committing themselves to a change, I pray LORD GOD ALMIGHTY that YOU will receive them. Let the entrance of YOUR Word cast light into their lives and bring them to the place of conviction and conversion…in JESUS Mighty Name I pray. Amen!