Zacchaeus Climbed Out On a Limb

By DiAnn Mills @DiAnnMills

How far are you willing to extend yourself to achieve a goal?

Are you aware of the sacrifices that partner with the rewards of working hard to reach a dream?

Do you ever wonder if youre all alone in your pursuit of satisfaction?

Has anyone ever posed those questions to you? If not, let me give you a little advice taken from the ups and downs of the life of our biblical friend Zacchaeus.

Zacchaeus made a decision.

When Zacchaeus learned Jesus was coming to his village, he made a conscious decision to see Him. No doubt hed heard all the hype about this man who healed the sick and raised the dead. As a tax collector, Zacchaeus might have questioned if Jesus paid his taxes. Surely, He didnt go about conducting miracles without getting paid.

Lesson for goal-setters

If you have a passion attempting something that refuses to let you go, then decide to be a success. Make a serious investment in your dream and prepare to work hard.

Zacchaeus needed a plan to be successful.

Many people would be shoving through the crowds to find Jesus. Zacchaeus had lots of questions, but a huge problem interfered with his decision to see Him. Zacchaeus was short in stature, and he’d always been the brunt of teasing. Two things went against his plan: his profession as a tax collector and his inability to see over a child’s head level. He learned the path Jesus would take and walked it. He discovered a tree with low branches and a plan formed. He would climb the tree and have an advantageous view.

Lesson for goal-setters

We need a plan to have our goal(s) eventually realized. Be a diligent planner: develop organizational habits and practice the skills needed to grasp your dream.

Zacchaeus didn’t know how far to climb.

On the day of Jesus’ visit, Zacchaeus glanced up into the tree and saw the utmost branches. Before others arrived and ridiculed him, he climbed the tree, going higher and higher. Fear settled into his heart, but finally he perched on a limb that was the perfect spot. He’d be the first person to see Jesus’ arrival from afar.

Lesson for goal-setters

Some people are thrilled with moderate success, and that’s fine. They are satisfied with their effort to accomplish little. Others choose to go for the highest goal possible until they breathe their last breath. Whatever you choose for your dream-reach, don’t be afraid of the climb.

Zacchaeus reached his heart’s desire.

Contentment settled on Zacchaeus. A quarter mile down the road, Jesus and His disciples slowly made their way toward him. When Jesus stood beneath the tree, he looked up at Zacchaeus. “I’d like to visit your house today,” Jesus said. “We can talk. What’s for dinner?” The story doesn’t end there; Zacchaeus became a follower of Jesus, leaving his past behind him.

Lesson for goal-setters

Obedience to God always brings more rewards than we ever imagined. If God is in your dream or goal, He will ensure you find the tools needed to be successful. Watch for unexpected blessings!

Are you ready to climb that tree?

Comments 18

  1. Thank you DiAnn!

    This is very timely as I share my new book, “Commended – Finding your Joy in God’s Approval, Affirmation, and Pleasure (Even on Your Worst Days).” There is much to consider in evaluating opportunities and the commitment involved, investing in technology, time, and ongoing content. I recognize the privilege the Father has given me in allowing me to write as I seek His direction and His glory in the midst of all the decisions.

    Both your devotional and communication with your subscribers is inspirational and a great model for me!

    BTW, I also tell a version of Zacchaeus’s story in Chapter Seven of “Commended!”

  2. Thanks for the post, DiAnn, and for reminding me that I need to always stay on the path to my goals. So often, I let things in life distract me and I end up in the ditch. More persistence is always good.

  3. I so love the story of Zacchaeus, DiAnn, and he certainly is an inspiration for all of us who seek to please God with the gifts He has given us. Let’s never be afraid to go out on a limb for Jesus!

  4. Excellent.
    The limbs we choose may look unsteady, yet we grab hold with our faith and reach for the handhold of Jesus.
    And the rewards are always faithfully in our hearts.
    Thank you DiAnn for your insight, and guiding faith.

  5. DiAnn,

    I really like ‘Zaccchaeus Climbed Out on a Limb’ involving both the spiritual and the natural. We live in an increasingly hostile society. Many Christians live in co-existence with fear and become willing prisoners with that which Christ has set us free. I’m sure Zaaccheus felt inadequate for whatever reasons, but Scripture tells us that he didn’t allow his feelings to dominate. He pressed through his obstacles and had an audience with Jesus that transformed his life. When we climb out on a limb, we have a better perception and learn there’s no limit to what God can do with a person willing to give Him total control.

    1. Dawn, what a beautiful response. We are so fortunate to be able to worship freely. Let’s never forget those who are persecuted for their faith, and someday that might be us.

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