I’m short. Five foot one, to be exact. That makes me needy.
“Honey, could you get me that glass on the top shelf?”
“Mr. Store Stocker, could you please get me that two liter bottle of Diet Coke on the top shelf?”
And the worst one of all: “Honey, I need to sit on the end of the aisle so I can see the (actors, dancers, orchestra, speaker) on stage.”
I’d love for church builders to construct extra seats built slightly out into the aisle. Oh, not enough to obstruct, but just enough so that us short people—yes, the seats would actually be designated for people, say five foot two and under— can actually see what’s going on.
Because, inevitably—it doesn’t matter which seat I’ve chosen—some tall person sits right in front of me and I’m doomed to an hour or two of seeing nothing on stage.
You would think that the tall person who seats himself or herself in front of me would look back and say, “Oh, excuse me, I just noticed that you’re short; I’ll move over to this seat. And would you like me to put my coat and purse on the seat in front of you so no one will sit there? I’ll just say I saved it for my (cousin, husband, pet alligator).”
But no. Sigh. That never happens.
I can really relate to little Zaccheus. Remember the children’s Bible song? “Zaccheus was a wee little man, and a wee little man was he.”
The man was so desperate to see Jesus pass by that he climbed up into a sycamore tree. Now there’s a thought. I could carry my own sycamore tree around any time I can’t see something because of all the tall people blocking my view.
Zaccheus, no doubt, was a needy man. He needed to see Jesus and to answer the question: Who is this Rabbi that heals the blind, deaf, lame, and casts out demons, and makes the religious authorities so angry and defensive?
We each have questions that we passionately want answered. Our neediness drives us to seek. My being physically short is nothing compared to my being short in spirit.
It’s what drove me to seek out answers. And I found them in Jesus, the Christ. I discovered that all of my falling short….my “spiritual shortness,” is remedied by Jesus’s work on the cross and the daily grace given me by God’s Holy Spirit.
In a sense, Jesus is my sycamore tree, giving me a lift into tall branches where I can glimpse what’s happening on the world’s stage.
My Lord, thanks for the lift.