I like the name Matthew; which means ‘gift from God’. And God has given me more than a few gifts with this name.
I am married to a Matthew, have a son named Matthew, though we call him by middle name. I have a brother Matthew, who has a son named Matthew, who we call Matthew. And, yes, my mother has laughingly complained that there are too many Matthews in her life!
The Matthew we celebrate today is the publican, the tax collector who walked away from his work to follow Jesus. He had a mid-life conversion so to speak; not a crisis, but a change of heart and his willingness to change gave us the gospel that bears his name.
Matthew’s gospel was written for his Jewish friends and neighbors – and us – to convince them Jesus was the promised Messiah. While the entire gospel is excellent, as all of them are, he has given us some verses worth memorizing:
“Truly, I say to you, unless you turn and become like children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven. Whoever humbles himself like this child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven.” Matthew 18:3-4
“Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.” Matthew 22:37
Take a moment today to send happy words to any Matthew’s in your life, as well as encouraging your friends and family to see Jesus’ as their promised Messiah. For only in Him shall we truly find the peace we all need:
“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.” Matthew 11:28