There were no paparazzi in attendance. The celebrity entertainment commentators were no where to be found. But don’t think for a moment there wasn’t electricity in the air. The controversial healer was passing. He had returned sight to the blind, hearing to the deaf and walking to the lame. More astounding than that though, was the apparent fact that just a few days prior he brought a dead man out of the tomb and returned him to life. The word sensational was an understatement and the buzz spread throughout every community and social class.
The wealthy tax collector was no different. He was infected with curiosity just like everyone else. He wanted to catch a glimpse of this miracle man along the road. His enthusiasm was so great it led him to climb a small tree where he would be able to find a better vantage point. Being out on the limb wasn’t dignified for a man of his status, but he was desperate. The holy man wouldn’t know his name anyway, so his reputation wasn’t on the line. Or so he thought.
The moments seemed like an eternity, but that tree limb finally provide a seat that was front and center. Then, in an instant, something unexpected happened. The healer turned and spoke to the tax collector by name. Jesus knew his name. How could this be? And, if he knew his name, how much more did he know about his life?
It was the only time in the three years of public ministry that Jesus invited himself over to a person’s home for dinner. And what a dinner it was. We don’t know the nature of the conversation, but we certainly see the fruit. The rich man’s questionable practices are reversed in an instance. His desire to attain wealth turns into a passion to give it away. The Son of God wouldn’t allow him to blend in anymore and changes had to be made.
Though we are known by our friends, family and the community, we often find ourselves wanting to be invisible to God. We aren’t. He knows which limb we’re on. He sees us sneaking around to catch a glimpse of Him. He sees us in the shadows trying to fill our own pockets. Yet, He desires to change us. He created us after all. He has better plans and better dreams for us. Will you come down, accept his invitation and join Him at the table to hear His challenge for your life?-- based on Luke 19:1-10