“when Jesus came to the place” (5)
We share space with Jesus and a whole bunch of other people. Sometimes we forget that faith is meant to be public. It is shared with those who share it, but it is also supposed to be a publicly shared thing. Faith is not supposed to be hidden or “just between me and God.”
Zacchaeus was an open person, apparently. He did what he felt was right whenever and wherever he was. He is defined by his actions more than by his words, isn’t he?
Jesus, I want my actions to speak your gospel to both my fellow believers and to those outside the faith. Guide my hands and heart into actions that praise you, so that when I speak, my words only confirm what I have already been doing.
“He was seeking to see who Jesus was…but he was small…” (v 2)
What obstacles get in your way? What keeps you from seeing Jesus? For Zacchaeus, it was his own body’s limitations; but his desire to see Jesus gave him the ingenuity to get to him somehow.
But it would have been an easier path for him if the crowd would have bridged the gap for him – shown a little interest in letting him see Jesus too. People have enough obstacles to faith in themselves. There’s no reason for us – the crowd – to make more.
Father, I want to be a bridge – not a block. Help me to remember that is not US and THEM, but rather YOU and US. We are all sinners who need to be redeemed by your grace.
I use an iPhone, an iPad, and two Macs (an old Macbook I just got and a Mac Mini in my office). You would think that I use Apple’s integrated apps for pretty much everything, wouldn’t you? In fact, I don’t use their apps except when I have to.
- I use the Agenda iOS app and Google Calendar for my schedule. Google Calendar is just a better cross-platform format than iCal, and Agenda has a nice clean interface that reminds me of a desk calendar. I find iCal to be cumbersome.
- For browsing the web, I use Google Chrome. The ability to sync all my settings across ANY machine I am using regardless of OS is very important to me.
- I have been using Gmail for my email for years, and while sometimes I wish I had a desktop mail client I could rely on, Gmail works just fine. Google has been adding features like Google+ integration and opening the API to developers, and Gmail is just GOOD at email.
- I take all my notes on Evernote. I even use Evernote for my mileage log. Every piece of paper I receive, every important document I need to consider, it goes into Evernote. I just throw things in there and organize it when I can.
- Rather than using Apple’s mediocre Reminder app or Google’s lackluster Tasks option for my To Do List, I use Any.DO. This nifty little app on iOS also has a Google Chrome plug-in that runs in its own window on my computers. It is well-designed and efficient at what it does.
- Until recently, I was using a combination of Apple’s Pages word processor and a virtual Windows XP machine to do document creation. Since last month, however, I have been using a combination of Microsoft Word for Mac 2011 and Dropbox. As far as I am concerned, Dropbox still owns personal cloud storage. Since Apple’s iCloud does not work on older Macs, it is cumbersome for me to have to download and upload documents every time I edit them at home. Microsoft’s new licensing plan allows me to have five computers running the Office Suite, so it just makes sense to use Word.
- For social media, I update almost exclusively from the Everypost app for iOS. Rarely do I ever post something from one of my computers. Everypost updates Facebook, Google+, Tumblr, Pinterest, and Twitter simultaneously, and you can use it for links, pictures, and YouTube. The only social media platform I interact on is Facebook, so I don’t need something like Tweetdeck or Hootsuite.
So, there you go. I would say that probably 95% of everything I do online employs one or more of these seven apps. Because they are all cloud-based, I have access to everything whenever I need it, and that allows greater flexibility in where and when I can be productive.
“Zacchaeus stood and said to the Lord…” (v 8)
It takes incredible bravery to stand up and confess your sins – especially when your sins have gotten you everything you have ever wanted. Zacchaeus chose righteousness over appearances, honoring Christ over seeking honor.
And the fascinating thing is that Jesus never said anything to Zacchaeus about giving things away. Zacchaeus comes up with that on his own. He knew what was right. He just needed a reason to act on that knowledge. Jesus taking notice of him was more than reason enough.
Take a few minutes to look at yourself in the mirror. What do you see? Are there elements you are ashamed of? Offer yourself – all of you that you see, warts and all – to the Lord. Can you give yourself to Him?
“the guest of a man who is a sinner” (v 7)
You cannot control who your family is. You have no control over the personalities of your relatives. You do, however, control who your guests are. Zacchaeus chose whom he would keep company with, and he chose well.
The funny thing is that the complaining observers chose to focus on Jesus spending time with a sinner rather than seeing a sinner who wanted to be with Jesus. Kind of backward, isn’t it?
Do your attitudes sometime reflect a backward focus – missing what Jesus wants to do because you can only see whom he wants to do it for?
When you look at “sinners”, what do you see? Ask Jesus to open your eyes and see the “sinners” who he has prepared to hear the message of the gospel from you.
“They all grumbled…” (v 7)
Those outside of the house Jesus enters will always complain about those inside the house. We sometimes worry more about how we will be perceived by those outside than what really matters – what the Savior who has entered will think.
You cannot think of criticism as a negative, as an assault on you. Zacchaeus did not. His response was not to satisfy the critics with justifications. Instead, he responds with righteousness that silences them.
Thank the Lord for your critics. Pray that God would bless them through you.
“So he hurried and came down and received him joyfully.” (v 6)
Once Jesus entered Zacchaeus’ world, Zacchaeus recognized how his journey to wealth and gain contrasted with Jesus’ journey of simplicity. Zacchaeus does not put it into so many words, but the rush of activity indicates a radical change.
It was, however, a change that Zacchaeus desired. He did not understand it, I am sure; but he wanted it all the same.
There are changes Jesus wants to make in your life that you might not know you need. Let him change you, even if you cannot know what the change will do to your way.
Do something radical this week. Ask the Lord to show you some act of kindness you can perform for someone who does not deserve it, and when he shows you, then act upon it immediately.