Two significant incidents occurred as Jesus passed through Jericho on his last journey to Jerusalem.  The first is the cure of a blind man.  (Luke 18: 35-43)  The second is the encounter of Jesus with a man named Zacchaeus. The latter is an appealing story that contains two important lessons.

We are told Zacchaeus was a wealthy man.  He was also a man who was not satisfied with his wealth and position. He was searching.  He evidently had heard of Jesus and wanted to see for himself what Jesus was like. Because he was short and could not see over the crowd Zacchaeus climbed a tree.

The first thing we learn is that Jesus did not seek out Zacchaeus.  He waited for Zacchaeus to somehow reach out to him.   We learn that Jesus does not force himself on anyone.  He respects their free will.  He wants people to come to him and when they do they are richly rewarded as was Zacchaeus.

Secondly, we can learn from Zacchaeus’ example.  He was willing to take whatever action was necessary to see Jesus. We need to recognize what tree we need to climb in order to see Jesus coming into our life.

We might visualize our life as a tree and its many leaves as the ordinary events of our daily life.  It is there that we need to look for Jesus.  We must learn to see Jesus in the ordinary bits and pieces of our daily routine.  Those little things are important because they make up the greatest portion of our lives.

It is not uncommon for a person to think they must strive for great changes, that anything less is too small a work.  But such an impression is mistaken and can be harmful.  Trying always to do great things or to produce extraordinary results when small one are what is needed typically ends in defeat and discouragement.

There is a passage in Luke’s gospel that clearly emphasizes the importance of little things. (Luke 16: 10)  “Anyone who is trustworthy in little things is trustworthy in great: anyone who is dishonest in little things is dishonest in great.”

No doubt most, if not all, of us would like to have new and exciting things enter our lives. But reality is quite the opposite.  Our life is filled with routine events that can seem insignificant and can be boring. If we cannot see Jesus coming into our lives in those little things he will most likely remain hidden.