Today’s Gospel proclamation speaks about how Zaccheus ran ahead and climbed a sycamore tree, to catch a glimpse of the Lord Jesus. Zaccheus was a tax collector. The religious leaders deemed these tax collectors as sinners and unclean because of their greed and their collaboration with the Romans. So Zaccheus was well aware that he was one of the despised. He knew that he was deemed unclean and that he had procured his wealth through greed. But here we see Zaccheus running on ahead to climb the tree. What he wanted was to have a glimpse of the Lord Jesus.
Zaccheus’ actions show his eagerness to know the Lord. Though he was a sinner, he took the first step to seek the face of the Lord. What happened next was dramatic. No one, not even Zaccheus thought that the Lord Jesus would stop and speak to him. The Lord Jesus went to the extent of visiting Zaccheus’ home and dining with him that day. All it took was the effort from Zaccheus, who was a sinner to seek the face of our Lord, and the Lord Jesus in turn decided to come into his home and save not only Zaccheus but his entire household.
There are times in our lives when we fall from grace. Times when we fall into sin. Though the Lord Jesus came to seek and save the lost, we find it hard to accept it and unlike Zaccheus we may not take steps to climb the tree to seek the face of God. Instead we hide from him. We lie low fearing that God will not forgive us. This takes us further away from the Lord. We know that in the story of the Prodigal son, when he repented and came home, his father ran to him and met him on the way with open arms. So is our Father, He is waiting with outstretched arms to welcome us back, to forgive us and to love us.
The beautiful sacrament of healing – the sacrament of reconciliation has been given to us. Some of us may have not made our confession for years, but it is not too late. What it takes is to believe that our Lord is waiting with open arms, with forgiveness and love. When we take the first step, the Lord will not only save us but also our entire family. So are we ready to take the first step to run ahead and climb the tree to seek the face of our Lord?
Prayer: Abba Father, give me the grace to take the first step to have a closer relationship with you. Amen.
Source: On our Knees publication (November Edition)