Monday, October 29, 2012

A Pick in Hand

He entered Jericho and was passing through. There was a man named Zacchaeus who was a chief tax collector, and he was rich. He was trying to see who Jesus was, but he was not able because of the crowd, since he was a short man. So running ahead, he climbed up a sycamore tree to see Jesus, since He was about to pass that way. When Jesus came to the place, He looked up and said to him, "Zacchaeus, hurry and come down, because today I must stay at your house." So he quickly came down and welcomed Him joyfully. All who saw it began to complain, "He's gone to lodge with a sinful man!". But Zacchaeus stood there and said to the Lord, "Look, I'll give half of my possessions to the poor, Lord! And if I have extorted anything from anyone, I'll pay back four times as much!". "Today salvation has come to this house," Jesus told him, "because he too is a son of Abraham. For the Son of Man has come to seek and to save the lost." Luke 19:1-10

Perhaps you have noticed that a geologist is always pictured with a small pick in his hand.  He uses this pick to break rocks so that he can determine of what sort they are.  Why can't he tell by looking at the outside?  He can't tell because even the hardest rocks become weathered, and their color and appearance change.  The geologist must break through this misleading exterior so that he can find the true nature of the rock within.

People often have misleading exteriors.  But it isn't the wind and rain that weather a man; he is weathered by being battered about by disappointments, failure, and grief in a world of anxiety, turmoil, competition, and fear.  Sickness and stress make their marks as do rejection and pressures of making a living.
Rarely, however, do you find one who is weathered through and through.  More often than not a good pick in the hand of a person skilled in its use will uncover the true man beneath a badly worn and weathered exterior.  Peeling away the exterior, we may find a tender heart and a sensitive, wounded spirit at the core.

Zacchaeus, battered and scarred by the world, had in turn battered and scarred others.  But when he met Jesus, the thick outer shell was broken.  Goodness showed itself that day.  No one today has the opportunity of knowing Jesus in person.  Yet, Christ can search the hearts of men and bring healing and hope to battered lives and wounded spirits.  Men so weathered that they didn't know themselves have found themselves through Christ.  As their lives came in contact with the living God, the thick outer shell was broken through.

Looking past the outer shell to the heart of those around us may give us opportunity to see what Jesus sees and minister healing.  Carry a pick with you today and see if you can discover some treasures under the surface.

Scripture to Claim:

The LORD looks down from heaven; He observes everyone. He gazes on all the inhabitants of the earth from His dwelling place. He alone crafts their hearts; He considers all their works.
Psalms 33:13-15

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