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Hurrying to Jesus

We live in a day and age where people like to hurry. We like to run around and see how much we can get done. Luke describes for us how Zacchaeus “Ran … and climbed up into a sycomore tree” in order to see Jesus (Luke 19:4). Zacchaeus, though he held a prominent position in society, was untroubled by any concern for dignity. A proud man would never be seen running, let alone climbing a tree.

Luke then tells us that when Jesus came to where Zacchaeus was, He said to him, “Zacchaeus, make haste, and come down; for to day I must abide at thy house” (Luke 19:5). What does Zacchaeus do? Luke writes that Zacchaeus “made haste, and came down, and received Him joyfully” (Luke 19:6).

We all know that Jesus calls us to do many things, but what we often fail to see is the urgency behind the commands of Jesus. Jesus does not say, “Hello Zacchaeus. When you get a chance, would you mind coming down from that tree and perhaps you might think about getting your house ready for Me to visit?”

No, Jesus is not that cordial. Jesus summons Zacchaeus to speed down from the tree. And this is how Jesus summons us. He is not saying to us, “Excuse me. I know you are very busy, but if you get a break from work or from watching television, would you consider the merits of being in a relationship with Me?” No, Jesus says to us, “Drop what you are doing and hurry to Me!” 

Notice that Zacchaeus “received Him joyfully.” It often happens that when we are summoned to do something, we begrudgingly do it out of obligation. But serving Christ is never meant to burden us; it is meant to make us glad! If we believe that the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ is truly amazing, then we should not be indifferent about His summons on our life. If grace is amazing, we should be hurrying to Christ, receiving Him gladly, and serving Him with a joyful heart!

—Bryn MacPhail, adapted