Day 233 – Unlikely Host
On: June 21, 2015 | By: SWLadmin
| Under: Blog
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All the people saw this and began to mutter, “He has gone to be the guest of a sinner.” But Zacchaeus stood up and said to the Lord, “Look, Lord! Here and now I give half of my possessions to the poor, and if I have cheated anybody out of anything, I will pay back four times the amount.” Jesus said to him, “Today salvation has come to this house, because this man, too, is a son of Abraham. For the Son of Man came to seek and to save the lost.” Luke 19:7-10
This all seems too good to be true. Bad guy meets Jesus – sees the error of his ways – does an about turn – becomes a good guy. Job done. Is it really that simple?
No doubt, Zacchaeus’s conscience had been at work to send him up that tree. No doubt, Jesus explained that he needed to demonstrate his repentance by actions, not just words. No doubt, the mutterers took some time to accept that this transformation was for real. No doubt there was plenty else in this man’s life that needed changing. No doubt, there were reverses along the way. No doubt, no doubt.
Regardless; yes, it is that simple. Simple as hopping on a bus with a pre-paid pass. Once we’re on, we’re on. And once we’re on, we’re off – on a journey. Jumping on takes a moment. The journey takes a lifetime.
Interesting that Zacchaeus was generous in the restitution he paid. It reflected the generosity that enabled his restoration. He had grasped the magnitude of the transformation that had happened in his life. He started well.
Interesting that those looking on were unable to see the potential of the encounter between Jesus and His unlikely host. And here’s the challenge: do I see where Jesus is at work in people’s lives – however unlikely it might seem that they may be members-in-waiting of the Kingdom of God? Thinking about it: I’m a pretty unlikely candidate, when I consider my all too frequent lack of grace and absence of love.
The apostle Paul could have been writing specifically for Zacchaeus (and me): What a wretched man I am! Who will rescue me from this body that is subject to death? Thanks be to God, who delivers me through Jesus Christ our Lord! Romans 7:24-25
Father God, thank you that, like Zacchaeus, You rescued me when I was helpless to help myself. How? Through Jesus Christ our Lord, Amen.