What happen when Zacchaeus encountered Jesus? Zacchaeus’s life was forever changed. Jesus did not forcefully change Zacchaeus’s heart. Rather, Zacchaeus was seeking to see who Jesus was; but could not see him because of the crowd… Much to the surprise of the crowd, Jesus tells Zacchaeus, come down quickly, for today I must stay at your house. How does Zacchaeus respond? Certainly with great joy, and with a repentant heart. Behold, half of my possessions, Lord I shall give to the poor, and if I have extorted anything, from anyone I shall repay it four times over. We see that Zacchaeus, who started out just as a seeker, undergoes conversion and becomes a follower. For the Son of Man has come to seek and to save what was lost.
How about us? … are we seeking to know Jesus better? The more we allow Jesus to enter our lives, the greater the transformation of our hearts. Think of what happened to the woman with the hemorrhage (Mk5:25-34), who thought to herself: If I just touch his clothes, I will get well. Our encounters with Jesus Christ lead us to spiritual wellness. We encounter Christ in the Scriptures. We encounter Christ in the Holy Eucharist. Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood lives in me, and I live in him. (Jn6:56)We encounter Christ in people in need. I assure you, as often as you did it for one of my least brothers, you did it for me. (Mt25:40) We encounter Christ in His mercy when we go to Confession. The first reading from the Book of Wisdom tells us: Therefore you rebuke offenders little by little, warn them and remind them of the sins they are committing, that they may abandon their wickedness and believe in you, O Lord. We encounter Christ in prayer.
What happens in each of these encounters? Jesus gives us the grace that we need. Perhaps change may not occur for us in a radical way, as it did for Zacchaeus, but in a more gradual way. Jesus will bring our efforts to fulfillment. We always pray for you, that our God may make you worthy of his calling and powerfully bring to fulfillment every good purpose and every effort of faith. (2Thes1:11)
God bless us all always!