The good news for the day November 15, 2016
Tuesday of the Thirty-Third Week in Ordinary Time (498)
At that time Jesus came to Jericho and just wanted to go on through the town. There was, though, a man named Zacchaeus, who was a highly placed tax collector there as well as a wealthy man; he was working to see who Jesus was; but he could not see him because of the crowd. The man was too short. So he ran ahead and climbed up a sycamore tree so that he could see Jesus—who was about to pass that way. When he reached the place where Zacchaeus was, Jesus looked up and said, “Zacchaeus, come on down quickly; today I have to stay at your house.” And he scrambled down quickly and received Jesus with joy. When people saw this, they started to mutter complaints, saying, “He has gone to stay at the house of a notorious man.” But Zacchaeus just stood there and said to the One in Charge: “Look, half of my what I own, Sir, I am going to be giving to the poor, and if I have squeezed anything from anyone, I shall repay it four times over.” Jesus said to him, “Today salvation has come to this house because this man too is a part of the family of Abraham. For the Son of Man has come to seek and to save what was lost.” (Luke 19)
How clear it is. No one is beyond redemption. But it takes courage. It takes creativity. It takes moving out of your labels, your comfort zone, your past habits—all the traits you got from your culture—the pursuit of money, the safety of a salvation where nothing disturbs.
The point is not Zacchaeus. The point is you—and me. Each of us daily can follow this sinner’s courage and creativity. The Good News is the whole story—that the sinner climbs out of the crowd, climbs into a position to see in a kind of undignified—but creative—way. Jesus notices and in some way that is surprising and caring asks a favor—to stay with you! People criticize the change of course, and the answer is not to them—but to the people hurt, the change in behavior that demonstrates justice, caring, humility, repentance and the sharing of the life of Jesus.