by Diane Gratrix, Orillia Campus, Guest Services Volunteer & Starting Point Facilitator
Welcome to Day 19 of the 24 Day Devotion. So glad you’re joining us! Each day for 24 days as a church, we’re going to read one chapter of the Gospel of Luke and post a devotion on it.
If you’ve never read the Bible, we’re so glad you’re joining us. And if you read the Bible, we hope this helps you grow in your faith.
Need to catch up? Start at Luke 1 – Is The New Testament A Lie? and follow along. Today’s devotion is below.
READ Luke 19
As a child, there was something so endearing about the story of Zacchaeus. Perhaps because he was a short guy, or because he climbed a tree – which seemed like a pretty cool thing to do in the bible. I always felt that Zacchaeus was an underdog, and when Jesus said he would go to his house, it seemed like a perfect Disney ending to the story.
Reflecting on the story now, I think of who Zaccheus was. He was a man who was disliked by everyone. He was a very wealthy head tax collector, meaning he was incredibly harsh and crooked.
Thinking of times when I have been in places where I felt that perhaps even one person didn’t like me, it caused me to shrink back and to try to go unnoticed. Zaccheus does the exact opposite.
He RUNS ahead of the crowds, which would surely turn some eyes to see a powerful and wealthy man running through the throngs of people. Then imagine, he climbs a tree!
A grown man climbing a tree doesn’t seem very dignified, and then add to it what he would have been wearing. Well, all I can think is that he left himself open to a lot of attention and ridicule.
Yet, despite his position, wealth and reputation, he continued to seek Jesus with his whole body.
Jesus finally passes that way, looks up to see Zacheus, and tells him he is coming to his house. Zacchaeus, who sacrificed his dignity by what he had done, receives the most incredible gift from Jesus.
A full transformation.
Zacchaeus is immediately touched by Jesus’ love and acceptance and changes his ways.
Seeking Jesus with your whole self can lead to a life of transformation.
Am I willing to seek Jesus fully and to receive the love, forgiveness and mercy that God wants me to have? Am I willing to seek and follow so fully that I may appear foolish and expose myself to attention and judgement?
God, help me to go out on a limb to follow your son. Help me to not be afraid of looking foolish or standing out. Let me seek you with my whole heart and being and be transformed by your love and grace.