Merry Christmas! If you have been counting, you know that today is the 12th Day of Christmas. The Incarnation is so important, so miraculous, that we celebrate it not just with a day, but for a season. Eight Days of an Octave, and Christmas days right up until the Baptism of the Lord. And the message of the Incarnation is simple, for Jesus tells us again and again: God loves us. Jesus loves us. And the truth is we need to hear it over and over again. And when love is involved, it demands sharing. Know the love that God has for you, and share that love with others.
Sometimes we make things about God too complicated. What is it you need to remember about God?
The message of the passion of Jesus is that he loves you.
It is interesting that today’s gospel story of Zacchaeus could be seen as a summary of the entire gospel. The mission of Jesus is quite interesting, as fundamentally he travels around helping the broken to know they are powerfully loved by God. Zacchaeus, despite his wealth, is one such broken person. While the gospel does not explicitly confirm that Zacchaeus cheated people, his position as a tax collector, his immediate statements about correcting fraud and extortion, and the reaction of the crowd seem to suggest Zacchaeus has not always been a man of good character. But the loving gaze of Jesus, and a surprising invitation make a big change in his life. Here how the gospel can be reduced to four movements or steps, and see how your life can change by embracing them.