Sunday, January 29, 2017
Today is the first pre-Lenten Sunday, the Sunday of Zacchaeus. Zacchaeus "sought to see who Jesus was" (Lk 19:3), but Jesus said to Zacchaeus, "Make haste and come down, for I must stay at your house today" (Lk 19:5). Jesus says a similar thing to each of us: "Come down! I desire more for you than having you just thinking about me; I desire a real relationship with you. I want to come into the house of your soul!" When Jesus comes into Zacchaeus' house, Zacchaeus experiences a conversion and tells Jesus what he is going to do to amend his life. Zacchaeus is willing to let go of those things that hinder his relationship with God. When we come down from our thoughts and let Jesus into the meeting place in our soul, He gives us the strength to let go of those things we cling to that prevent us from deepening our relationship with Him. He can then say to us as He said to Zacchaeus, "Salvation has come to this house today!" Let's pray for each other that we may be willing, with the haste of Zacchaeus, to "receive [Jesus] joyfully" (Lk 19:6) as we begin our preparations for the Great Fast. It is Jesus in us who will give us the strength for our Lenten journey of conversion.