I love the story of Zacchaeus. He was short. I am short. He was rich. I’m a Dave Ramsey student. He could climb a tree. I like to look at trees. What I really love about Zacchaeus is that he was desperate for Jesus. Being desperate means feeling hopeless. Being desperate is when you have tried so many other things and all attempts have failed. This is it. Do or die. It’s critical. It’s risky. It’s a last-ditch effort. You realize there’s no way. There’s only Jesus.
Zacchaeus was a sinner, like you, like me. He recognized that his life was hopeless. He realized it was do or die. He wanted so badly to see Jesus. All he wanted was Jesus. But he couldn’t see him. He was too short. He ran. He ran ahead and climbed higher. Higher. He climbed up a sycamore tree so he could catch a glimpse of Jesus. He did all he could to see Him.
We live in a different time than Zacchaeus but we too can see Jesus. We actually are blessed with the Holy Spirit, God in us, when we accept Christ. So anytime we want to catch a glimpse of Jesus, we simply need to pray, to read His Word. We don’t have to climb trees. We don’t have to run fast to get ahead. He’s right there within reach. Are you reaching? Are you desperate for Jesus? Is He all you want right now?
“Then Jesus entered and walked through Jericho. There was a man there, his name Zacchaeus, the head tax man and quite rich. He wanted desperately to see Jesus, but the crowd was in his way—he was a short man and couldn’t see over the crowd. So he ran on ahead and climbed up in a sycamore tree so he could see Jesus when he came by.”
-Luke 19:1-4 [MSG]
There are often moments in life when we see someone who needs encouragement, comfort, or help. Typically we will see a friend or a co-worker who is not feeling well. Or we will come across a person from our church family who needs some comforting. Even our own family needs to be shown compassion. The problem is that we are so busy today that we do not always realise it. When we do see it happening, we are so accustomed to handling everything online, that we may not know how to approach the situation. Some situations may seem so difficult, we shy away because we do not know what to say or how to act.
When Peter, James, and John went up the mountain with Jesus during the Transfiguration, they were witnesses to something very special. When they heard the voice from heaven, they fell on their faces in fear. They were “terrified” the Bible says in chapter 17 of Matthew. Jesus could have responded in any way; however, He simply did three things.
*He went to them.
*He touched them.
*He spoke to them.
Even the words He spoke were not part of some grand dissertation. He simply told them to get up and not to be afraid. He didn’t pull out a miracle and do something to show them things were okay. He did not address the voice they heard or their fears. The situation was left untouched. He could have given them more insight into the situation or attempted to discuss their feelings. Instead, it was short and sweet.
If you know someone who is in need of some comfort, some encouragement or support, do not worry that you will not know what to say or how to act. Keep it simple. Go to them. Give them a hug or pat on the back. Speak with them. In actuality, you may be listening more than anything. There’s no need to make the situation more difficult. Just being there makes all the difference. It is okay to admit you do not know what to say. The person will appreciate that you care.
“Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our affliction, so that we may be able to comfort those who are in any affliction, with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God.”
– 2 Corinthians 1:3-4 [ESV]