Today’s Gospel: Luke 19:1-10 (Today Salvation Has Come)
“He entered Jericho and was passing through. And there was a man named Zacchaeus; he was a chief tax collector, and rich. And he sought to see who Jesus was, but could not, on account of the crowd, because he was small of stature. So he ran on ahead and climbed up into a sycamore tree to see him, for he was to pass that way. And when Jesus came to the place, he looked up and said to him, "Zacchaeus, make haste and come down; for I must stay at your house today." So, he made haste and came down, and received him joyfully. And when they saw it they all murmured, "He has gone in to be the guest of a man who is a sinner." And Zacchaeus stood and said to the Lord, "Behold, Lord, the half of my goods I give to the poor; and if I have defrauded any one of anything, I restore it fourfold." And Jesus said to him, "Today salvation has come to this house, since he also is a son of Abraham. For the Son of man came to seek and to save the lost."
If Jesus were to say “I must stay at your home today” would you be embarrassed or excited? Would you have to text someone to prepare your home in advance? or Would your home always be ready for His arrival? Zacchaeus was a hated man, he was a tax collector, a chief tax collector! Tax collectors were known for cheating and overcharging all the people; hence these tax collectors accumulated great wealth from their lying and cheating practices of how they conducted business. But look at what Jesus’ visit did to this man’s heart! Zacchaeus stood and said to the Lord, "Behold, Lord, the half of my goods I give to the poor; and if I have defrauded any one of anything, I restore it fourfold." Such an amazing blessing has come upon this man. His heart has changed from greedy to loving. After this encounter the community Zacchaeus was living in would all feel that blessing.
Is there room for Jesus to sit at your table? Can Jesus step fully into your life? God knows all of us need His love, His mercy, His forgiveness and His compassion in our lives. How can we improve or change what we do in our lives to be like Zacchaeus? Zacchaeus completely turned his life around and did all he can for others, never to cheat another person again. All of us of cause do not fit into this category of business or social practice of lying or stealing or misleading to have personal gain. But then self-examination is the best test here, yes, including myself. Where in our lives do we use a situation or a story or a reason; to not help someone so that we gain more keeping it to ourselves rather than give? Yes, that’s similar, sadly in many ways it’s probably worse.
Our objective as Catholics should always be to help others; in whatever way, we have been blessed to help them. If we are greedy in power, finance or possession and we refuse to open our closed fist to reach out to our needy sister or brother; then we too are just as guilty as Zacchaeus. There are many poor and needy individuals and families out there that need our help. Some need friendship and compassion and many of us are gifted in that area of blessing. A friendly hello, or a handshake or a hug or an encouraging word or even a prayer with them. Others of us can provide some additional food, because we have so many left-overs. Well, wrap up a plate or two or a tray; just get them food immediately, they are hungry. If you have ever experienced hunger you would understand. Even invite them over, have a meal, a prayer, extend your love and compassion. And then there are others who can help them in ways that mean a lot, secretly pay their rent, maybe pay a bill or two at the utility company. Get them a food store gift card. You can do all this uncover if you don’t want to be known. You have no idea how much joy you will bring to those suffering. They will certainly cry tears of joy. Consider many of these things, most especially as we come upon this holiday time of the year (Thanksgiving & Christmas)! Think of others and incorporate that thought, as you are planning your holiday festivities. God Bless all of you. Talk to you tomorrow.
Your brother in Christ Jesus
And His Most Blessed Mother,
Jim (The Rosary Man) Dacey Jr OFS
**(NEW DAILY FEATURE)
Today is Sunday: We pray the Glorious Mysteries:
The Glorious Mysteries
1. The Resurrection (Faith) –Mark 16:1-8
2. The Ascension (Hope) –Luke 24:50-53
3. The Descent of the Holy Spirit (Love) –Acts 2:1-4
4. The Assumption of Our Lady
(Grace of a Happy Death) –Rev 12:1-6
5. The Coronation of Mary (Mary’s intercession) –Judith 15:9-10
Glory and Honor and Praise to You Lord Jesus Christ!
Rosary Man Jim's Glorious Reflections: http://beads-of-joy-blog.blogspot.com/2013/05/the-glorious-mysteries.html