Holy Gospel of Jesus Christ according to Saint Luke 19, 1-10
He entered Jericho and was passing through it. A man was there named Zacchaeus; he was a chief tax-collector and was rich. He was trying to see who Jesus was, but on account of the crowd he could not, because he was short in stature. So he ran ahead and climbed a sycamore tree to see him, because he was going to pass that way. When Jesus came to the place, he looked up and said to him, ‘Zacchaeus, hurry and come down; for I must stay at your house today.’ So he hurried down and was happy to welcome him. All who saw it began to grumble and said, ‘He has gone to be the guest of one who is a sinner.’ Zacchaeus stood there and said to the Lord, ‘Look, half of my possessions, Lord, I will give to the poor; and if I have defrauded anyone of anything, I will pay back four times as much.’ Then Jesus said to him, ‘Today salvation has come to this house, because he too is a son of Abraham. For the Son of Man came to seek out and to save the lost.’
Jesus saw him
1) Zacchaeus: The gospel describes how a man who appears to have no needs is a person who seeks above all else the appearance of having lived well. This is similar to the many influencers of modern times that have a lot of followers on Instagram or Youtube and will do anything to maintain and grow their subscriber base. . However, people who prioritize outward appearances are really people who are small on the inside, but appear big on the outside. He is looking to fill the empty space inside of him with money and power. I wonder if you are similar to Zacchaeus and the material things you own, like the latest car,the most prestigious job, or the best looks are enough to make you feel happy. Are you sure of yourself? How is your self-esteem? Any extreme is a bad place to be.
2) He saw: Jesus, the Son of God, was seen by authority as they looked up at him. Think of how nowadays we look at authority as being above us. Jesus, on the other hand, is seen from below. This lesson reminds all Catholics that when we possess authority within the Church and act with it, we too must see everyone else from below. We command from a position based on humbleness. From where do you see your brothers and sisters, from above or from below?
3) I will give back: When you find Jesus, your perspective changes. You are not the same person. It is something we have to work on a daily basis since there are times we accommodate ourselves in our faith and the sacraments. I think of the first Christians that began their faith and how they experienced the fervor of the Eucharist. They lived in fear of being caught and killed but their courage and love led them to confront great obstacles. I think about the Crusades and the simple Christians who left everything behind, including their families, in order to defend their faith. I think about all the Christians that cannot attend Mass because of their illnesses and have to be satisfied with Mass on Youtube or by listening to it on an audio. I think about all the Christians who in their own homes are laughed at, ignored, or seen as fanatics. Today, how do you live your faith?
God bless you in the name of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit.
Always remember, heaven is our goal.