In June 2004, I taught English in a conversational English camp in Lyon France. It was a wonderful experience in a beautiful city. The city was actually Saint Genis Laval a suburb of Lyon.
I stayed in the home of a retired American couple who were serving a four year missions term there. Each evening the wife would leave something out for me to have for breakfast the next morning such as bread or pastries.
(Having since found out I have Celiacs I really miss bread and pastries)
One morning I went to the kitchen and saw a box of croissants with a label that said- Escargo which means snails. There were bits of black on the croissants, so I assumed they were pieces of snail.
The husband came to the kitchen to have coffee with me and asked if I wanted a croissant. I told him I don’t eat snails. He smiled and picked one up to show me it was shaped like a snail. He then told me the black pieces were chocolate. We laughed. I ate one and took one with me for later.
We so often assume we know before we check into something. We at times do the same with people. For our own comfort zone, we like to be able to put people into neat little boxes.
Thankfully, Jesus never does that. Numerous times when Jesus was on earth, he shook the status quo by reaching out to someone others never would. Jesus does not view us as others do. When Jesus looks at us, he sees someone he loves and died for. He also sees the person we will become because of him.
A great example of that is Zacchaeus in Luke 19. Zacchaeus was a tax collector, so he was frowned down upon by most of the people. Tax collectors in those days were known for being corrupt. A rabbi, religious leader, would have never gone into his home. But Jesus saw the change that would happen and went to his home. Other reacted negatively, but Jesus paid them no attention. We read in Luke 19:
“All the people saw this and began to mutter, “He has gone to be the guest of a sinner.”
“But Zacchaeus stood up and said to the Lord, “Look, Lord! Here and now I give half of my possessions to the poor, and if I have cheated anybody out of anything, I will pay back four times the amount.”
“Jesus said to him, “Today salvation has come to this house, because this man, too, is a son of Abraham. For the Son of Man came to seek and to save the lost.”
Because Jesus did not keep Zacchaeus in the neat little box that others did in their thinking, and because Jesus knew the change that he would bring about in Zacchaeus, Zacchaeus was transformed and his life completely turned around.
Only God can see what is in the heart and soul of people. We need to be careful of judgement of others and let Jesus lead us to show his love.
Thank you for reading. God Bless.