Littleness seems to be a dominant theme in Sunday’s Scripture readings.
The First Reading from Wisdom speaks of how the entire universe is but a grain of sand before the Lord. Furthermore, God created even the most miniscule things of the earth out of love. Furthermore, God corrects sinners “little by little” in hopes that gentle persuasion might accomplish His desires.
Writing to the Thessalonians, Paul writes that God might “powerfully bring to fulfillment every good purpose and every effort of faith.” Twice Paul emphasized “every.” It is his way of saying that everything we do, whether large or small, is helping to bring about the fulfillment of God’s Kingdom.
The Gospel is the familiar story of Zacchaeus, the tax collector. He was very small in stature and also very small in the eyes of his contemporaries precisely because he was a tax collector. As far as they were concerned, he was a non-entity. But not for Jesus.
By way of footnote, earlier in Luke’s Gospel a God-fearing young man asked Jesus what he had to do to be saved. When he heard that salvation depended on selling his goods and giving to the poor he walked away. Not so for Zacchaeus. His encounter with Jesus led him to sell half his goods and make restitution to all he had defrauded.
I know I’ve said it before, but it is always good to be reminded: No matter how small we think ourselves to be in the eyes of the world, in the eyes of God we are beyond compare. No matter how little we think our loving words and actions might be, they are huge in the eyes of God.
Praise God from whom all blessings flow!!!
Fr. Herb, C.S.C.