Sept. 8, 2017 at 4:50 p.m.
One of the first stories I remember learning in church was the story of Zacchaeus. A short tax-collector, Zacchaeus climbed up a sycamore tree to catch a glimpse of Jesus when he learned that Jesus was passing by. Truth is, you and I have a lot in common with Zacchaeus, even if we are taller. The way Jesus related to Zacchaeus is the same way He wants to relate to us. Let's take a closer look.
First, Jesus knows us. Without ever seeing Zacchaeus before, Jesus called him by name. Jesus knew his name for the very same reason He knows our names: He is God. He knows everyone's name. Sometimes at seminars, they ask us to wear name tags so that everyone will know who we are, but you don't have to wear a name tag for Jesus. He already knows our names (Isaiah 43:1). You may think you are all alone in this world and that no one knows you or cares about you, but there is a loving Savior who came seeking you and knows you by name.
Second, Jesus knows what we need – a relationship. After Jesus called his name, He invited Zacchaeus to come down from the tree. With words of love and compassion, Jesus invited the tax-collector to enjoy a relationship with Him. They even celebrated the relationship by having a party at Zacchaeus' house, causing the religious people of that day to get upset. Likewise, Jesus wants an intimate, loving, and caring relationship with you.
Third, Jesus sees us not as we are, but as who we can become. Everyone else looked at Zacchaeus and saw a dirty rotten sinner, but Jesus didn't see a crooked tax-collector. He saw a man who could be generous, giving half of his ill-gotten fortune away to the less fortunate. And Jesus sees your potential. He sees what you can become with His help and guidance. Most of all, if you let Him, Jesus will bring out the best in you just like He did Zacchaeus.