“I don’t know much about trees,” Stan began, “and I don’t think sycamore trees even grow around here, but there’s a sycamore tree mentioned in Luke’s gospel that’s really important to me.”
“Luke was writing about sycamore trees?” I asked.
“Just one,” Stan replied, “and it had to do with a fellow who climbed one so he could see Jesus.”
“Someone climbed a tree in order to see Jesus?” I responded. “What was that all about?”
“As Jesus was passing through Jericho on His way to Jerusalem,” Stan said, “there was a man named Zaccheus who wanted to see Jesus. Since he was short in stature, he couldn’t see over the crowd so he climbed a sycamore tree in order to see Jesus as He passed by.”
“And that’s important to you?” I asked.
“Sure is,” Stan replied. “While I never climbed an actual tree in order to see Jesus, I did have to adjust my life in order to see Him.”
Continuing, he said, “This Zaccheus fellow realized he couldn’t see Jesus where he was, so he did what needed to be done in order to see Him.”
“Same thing with me. When God awakened in me the desire to know Him through Jesus, I realized that I couldn’t see Jesus from where I was. I needed to make adjustments in my life in order to see Him.”
Continuing, he said, “Just like Zaccheus, I couldn’t remain in the crowd where I was. I needed to get somewhere else. I needed to ‘climb a sycamore tree’, whatever it was, in order to see Jesus.”
Concluding, Stan said, “Every day of my life there are things that get in the way of being able to see Jesus. In order for me to see Him, I have to get away from what is keeping me from seeing Him. There are ‘sycamore trees’ all around me that I need to climb in order to see Jesus. Places to go and things to do to get a clear view.”
“I just need to recognize that I can’t remain where I am and see Him as He wants me to see Him. I need to start and not stop climbing!”
And He (Jesus) entered and was passing through Jericho. And behold, there was a man called by the name of Zaccheus; and he was a chief tax gatherer, and he was rich. And he was trying to see who Jesus was, and he was unable because of the crowd, for he was small in stature. And he ran on ahead and climbed up into a sycamore tree in order to see Him, for He was about to pass through that way. Luke 19:1 – 4.
Prayer: Thank you, Father, that you want me to see you. Thank you that you have provided every way I need in order to see you and all you have for me on both sides of eternity. I confess that too often I do not make the effort required to see you. I do not choose to climb the “sycamore tree” you have available for me to climb in order to see you. Please forgive me. And please help me in following your lead, whatever it is, so that I can see you as clearly and as deeply as possible. Thank you I can and do bring these prayers before you in the name of Jesus. Amen.
Things to think (and journal) about:
1. What is your biggest take-away from this devotional?
2. What does this devotional say about God and about us as His people?
3. What is God saying to you to do personally?
4. Who can you share this with to make a difference?
Comments, questions, suggestions, and the like can be addressed to The Storyteller at: firstname.lastname@example.org.