The character in today’s Gospel passage from Luke 19 is a favorite of kids the world over. Every time I read this story, I can hear the little song in my head that we used to sing to our children. “Zacchaeus was a wee little man, a wee little man was he. He climbed up in a sycamore tree for the Lord he wanted to see.” Great memories.
The story of Zacchaeus is one of the great stories of repentance and redemption. Zacchaeus is a tax collector. Once he has an encounter with Jesus, he changes immediately. Not only does he repent of the fact that he had cheated so many people, but he promises to give up half of his possessions and repay everyone he has cheated four times over. Now that’s a conversion!
Have you had that kind of encounter with Jesus lately? I believe that this kind of encounter is not something that should happen just once in our lives. So often, after an initial encounter with the Lord, we tend to fall back into our old ways. Let’s pray that Jesus will continue to rock our world often!
Father, help us to encounter Jesus in a radical way like Zacchaeus did. And not just once, but again and again. Amen.
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