Whoever heeds discipline shows the way to life, but whoever ignores correction leads others astray.
— Proverbs 10:17
In Luke 19 we read about a man named Zacchaeus who was a wealthy tax collector. In the Jewish society of that day, tax collectors were despised as traitors because they worked for the Roman Empire and took money away from their own people. They also grew rich because they could charge extra fees and keep that money for themselves.
But one day Zacchaeus met Jesus, and the next thing he knew, Jesus was inviting himself to Zacchaeus’s home and inspiring him to be a better person. It’s a beautiful story of how transformation can happen through Jesus.
We don’t know what Jesus was teaching to the crowds that day. And we don’t know much about what Jesus said to Zacchaeus. But other passages show clearly what Jesus taught about loving God and loving our neighbors, and something definitely stirred Zacchaeus’s heart to change. Whatever was said, Zacchaeus became open to receiving Jesus. And Zacchaeus decided to give half of his possessions to the poor and to pay back four times what he had cheated from anyone.
Through Jesus’ teaching, Zacchaeus found the way to life. The Spirit of God convicted him of his sins against others, and he became open to correction and discipline. And by his actions he became an example to lead others.
Faithful Father, thank you for loving me, even when I refuse your discipline and often think my way is better. Correct me and guide me so that I can show others the way to life. Amen.