BY REV. TOM EARLY — ST. ALBAN’S EPISCOPAL CHURCH
“Zacchaeus was a wee little man and a wee little man was he.”
How embarrassing it must have been that of all the people in Jericho, the up and coming Rabbi Jesus chose Zacchaeus to visit. There is reason to believe that this sort of pathetic fellow would have been disliked if not despised by his community. Perhaps they were hoping that the little twerp would go unnoticed by the teacher who had come with authority.
But, sadly for the townspeople, Jesus had found the city’s most embarrassing person.
Visitors can sometimes make the visited panic. Many of us, I imagine, want to put our best foot forward when company comes. We want guests to see the things we want them to see and miss the things we don't. But for Christians, we love and serve a Lord who always seeks out our secret places.
The truth is we all have a little Zacchaeus in us; a part of us that we are embarrassed or ashamed of. And, as scary as it may seem, when Jesus comes to make a home in our heart, he will likely want to have dinner with that very part of us we hope he’ll ignore. But what this story tells us is that there is no part of us that Jesus has not come to love.
In fact, he desires most for us to surrender our “Zacchaeus’s” to him so that he might love them back into shape. Jesus has come to find the “black sheep” of our soul. What do you keep hidden from the world? How might you introduce the “Zacchaeus” of your heart to Jesus?