“And he sought to see Jesus who he was; and could not for the press, because he was little of stature. And he ran before, and climbed up into a sycomore tree to see him: for he was to pass that way. And when Jesus came to the place, he looked up, and saw him, and said unto him, Zacchaeus, make haste, and come down; for to day I must abide at thy house. And he made haste, and came down, and received him joyfully.” (Luke 19:3-6KJV)
When coming out from the church one day, I met a man who was both deaf and mute. We had never had any personal interaction before, and I don’t know how to communicate in sign language. But he smiled at me. I smiled back and he smiled again. That was one of the most beautiful sights that I had ever seen. It was a sincere and joyful smile without words. It broke communication barriers.
That event reminded me of a sincere man in the Bible, Zacchaeus. He was a small man with a big heart — a heart that was willing to accommodate God. Also, I can never forget Jesus, Who senses the heart, treats everyone with equal love, and is not discriminatory or judgmental.
Zacchaeus had the right attitude and was a typical example of the saying, “Don’t judge a book by its cover.” When I was in the university, there was a girl in my hostel who was highly troublesome. Others complained about her, and she openly flouted the rules of the lodge. But the most amazing thing was how obedient she was after she was corrected. So, I studied her and found out that she was a lovely young lady who just despised rules.
Zacchaeus must have been like that. He was never encouraged by the hypocritical Pharisees, but he wanted to see the Man Who ate with publicans and “sinners”. When Christ saw him, He called him, and the Bible says that he came down, and received Him joyfully.
Rules aren’t bad, but Christians can display that attitude that is not discriminatory or judgmental. It’s an attitude that looks beyond the common public opinions of people. If it doesn’t see a smile, it gives one, and if it sees a smile, it returns it. It receives others joyfully. That is the attitude of a true Christian. Are you a Christian with “that attitude”?
There is a wonderful song by John W. Peterson that says:
“Show a little bit of love and kindness(Show a Little Bit of Love and Kindness by John W. Peterson)
Never go along with hatred’s blindness,
Take a little time to reach for joy and wear a happy face,
Sing a little bit when the days are dreary,
Give a little help to a friend that’s weary,
That’s the way to make the world a happy place.”
This is the Christian’s anthem!
Prayer: Lord Jesus, put Your love in us, show us how to love, and help us to display that attitude of true love to those around us. Amen.
Copyright © 2023, by John Oguntoyinbo<firstname.lastname@example.org>, first published on the PresbyCan Daily Devotional presbycan.ca
Used with the permission of PresbyCan and author.