When Jesus entered Jericho and was going through the city, a man named Zaccheus was there. He was a tax collector and a wealthy man. He wanted to see what Jesus was like, but he was a short man and could not see because of the crowd. So he ran ahead and climbed up a sycamore tree. From there he would be able to see Jesus who had to pass that way. When Jesus came to the place, He looked up and said to him, ‘Zaccheus, come down quickly for I must stay at your house today’. So Zaccheus hurried down and received him joyfully.
All the people who saw it began to grumble and said, «He has gone to the house of a sinner as a guest». But Zaccheus spoke to Jesus, «The half of my goods, Lord, I give to the poor, and if I have cheated anyone, I will pay him back four times as much». Looking at him Jesus said, «Salvation has come to this house today, for he is also a true son of Abraham. The Son of Man has come to seek and to save the lost».
The easiest way to apply the gospel in our daily life is to see the different personages in the bible and choose the best way to respond to Jesus. Thus we can easily approach Jesus and profit the divine graces. Today I would like to invite you to imitate Jesus directly.
His capacity to be totally present.
Be present does mean that we remain connected to the feelings and sentiments of people around, fully realising what’s happen in us. Be connect to our interiority and through this to our exteriority. Jesus takes us little further, by inviting us to go beyond of what’s happening in us and around us, but also to identify the invisible people what are spiritually or mentally with us, but not physically present there. They are behind us or before us. Zaccheus is one such person, who had the desire to see Jesus but couldn’t. Jesus is there to identify Him and respond to him.
Learn to make a pause.
Just like the Good Samaritan, Jesus makes a sacred pause, little stop over. This pause is very important for Jesus to get closer to the person. The more we learn to make this pause, the more we will be able to be close to the people and know them. This pause will help us to express our sympathy and interest towards the other. Humanly it’s import to have this little gest towards the other. If we make a little gest towards the other, God will grand us great things, sometime beyond our merits and imaginations. God is always generous in giving. Though this man wished only to see Jesus, Jesus invites himself into home and honours him, which paves the way for his conversion. This pause is not to stop, but to restart.
Faithfulness to the mission
Though apparently we have an impression that Jesus has made a pause, we find in this pause the accomplishment of divine will. Jesus wish to save, save not only an individual, but the whole family. The mission of Jesus is universal and inclusive. He doesn’t look what others say, but what is the will of the Father. There is a greater joy in accomplishing the divine will. The more we are closer to the divine will, the deeper will be our joy and contentment.
Let us also learn to make a pause and be faithful to our baptismal vocation. Have a wonderful day.
«The Son of Man has come to seek and to save the lost»
Fr. Enric RIBAS i Baciana
Today, I'll be Zaccheus. This personage was a wealthy man and the chief of the Publicans; I have more than I need and, perhaps too often, I behave like a Publican and forget about Jesus Christ. Amidst the crowd, Jesus seeks Zaccheus; today, amidst our world, He is precisely looking for me: «Come down quickly for I must stay at your house today» (Lk 19:5).
Zaccheus wants to see Jesus; if he does not run ahead and climbs up the sycamore tree, he will not be able to see him. I would also like to see God's deeds as much as possible!, but I'm not too sure I am willing to behave like a fool as Zaccheus did. To allow for Jesus' reaction, the disposition of the chief among the Jericho Publicans is required; and, if he does not hurry up, he may eventually lose the opportunity to be touched by Jesus and be therefore saved. Maybe I have had too many occasions to meet Jesus and maybe it is about time to be courageous, to leave home to meet him and invite him to enter me, so that He can also say about me: «Salvation has come to this house today, for he is also a true son of Abraham. The Son of Man has come to seek and to save the lost» (Lk 19:9-10).
Zaccheus receives Jesus into his home, his life and his heart, even though he probably does not feel worthy of a visit like that. His conversion is total: he begins by giving up any ambition for riches, followed with the intention to share his goods and he ends up with the strong decision to impart justice, while remedying his sins. Maybe, since a long time ago, Jesus has been asking me something similar, but I did not want to hear him and turned my deaf ears; I must still be converted.
St. Maximus said: «There is nothing God loves more and pleases him best as a man converting with true regret». Let him help me to make it come true today.