Immediate Change

When Jesus reached the spot, He looked up and said to him, “Zacchaeus, come down immediately. I must stay at your house today.” So he came down at once and welcomed Him gladly. Luke 19:5-6

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Mason did something this morning that drove me right over the edge. Before I could even think of stopping myself, I was yelling at him with all my might. He’s fifteen. Of course he started arguing back. It wasn’t even 7 a.m., I hadn’t had my coffee yet, and already the day was a disaster.

I stormed out of the kitchen to finish getting myself ready for the day. When I came back ten minutes later, Mason was sincerely contrite, hugged me, and apologized. Who does that? Who, in an instant, owns their mistakes, resolves to do better, and then does?

It humbled me completely, and I found myself apologizing too, hugging him back with my heart full of love, with no anger in sight. As I sipped my first cup of coffee a few minutes later, I realized the day had been redeemed, and it was beautiful!

In Luke 19, Zacchaeus isn’t just a tax collector; He’s the chief of them all. You’ve got to figure that as conniving and thieving as the other tax collectors are, Zacchaeus has to be worse.

Yet, the minute he hears Jesus is coming, he climbs a tree to get a better look at Him. When Jesus tells him to come down and host Him at his house, Zacchaeus doesn’t just meander his way down the tree. He comes down at once, not put out that Jesus is going to impose on him for hospitality. Instead, he welcomes Jesus gladly.

Just as immediately, Zacchaeus repents. With sincerity and resolve, he vows to give half of his possessions to the poor, and pay anyone he’s swindled four times what he owes them. It’s not a future promise he may forget, or later find justification for why he shouldn’t follow through. It’s a radical change he carries out there and then.

How many of us are good at repentance? How many of us are quick to change our negative ways?

The only things I’m good at in the moment are sudden anger and quick defensiveness. I can go from 0 to 100 with both of those in less than a heartbeat. But repentance? Immediately? No way.

I have so much to learn from Zacchaeus. I think that’s one of the reasons why God gifted me with Mason. He’s a Zacchaeus role model right in my very own home. May I always be open to the lessons he’s here to teach me.

Questions for Reflection:

  • Am I quick to repent, forgive, and transform? If not, how can I improve?
  • Who are the role models God has placed in my life?
  • What am I meant to learn from them?

Who does that? Who, in an instant, owns their mistakes, resolves to do better, and then does?

2 thoughts on “Immediate Change

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