An Encouraging Word from Max Lucado – Unscrooged Hearts
resist the change. The ungrateful servant did. In the story Jesus told, the
servant owed more money to the king than he could ever repay. Try as he might,
the man couldn’t make the payments. He’d sooner find frogs in the clouds than
he’d find cash for the debt. “So the king ordered that he, his wife, his
children, and everything he had be sold to pay the debt. But the man fell down
before the king and begged him, ‘Oh, sir, be patient with me, and I will pay it
all.’ Then the king was filled with pity for him, and he released him and
forgave his debt” (Matt. 18:25–27 NLT).
The man made a beeline to the
house of a person who owed him a few dollars. The just-blessed will become the
quick-to-bless, right? Not in this case. He demanded payment. He turned a deaf
ear to the fellow’s pleas for mercy and locked him in debtors’
How could he be so scroogey? Jesus doesn’t tell us. He leaves us
to speculate, and I speculate this much: grace never happened to him. He thought
he had bamboozled the system and fleeced the old man. He exited the king’s
castle not with a thankful heart (“What a great king I serve!”) but with a puffy
chest (“What a shrewd man I am!”). The king learned of the self-centered
response and went ballistic. “You evil servant! I forgave you that tremendous
debt because you pleaded with me. Shouldn’t you have mercy on your fellow
servant, just as I had mercy on you?” (vv. 32–33 NLT).
Is grace happening to you?
How long has it been since
your generosity stunned someone? Since someone objected, “No, really, this is
too generous”? If it has been a while, reconsider God’s extravagant grace.
“Forget not all his benefits, who forgives all your iniquity” (Ps. 103:2–3
Let grace unscrooge your heart. “Grow in the grace and knowledge of
our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ” (2 Peter 3:18).