The Specificity of Zacchaeus

Luke 19:1-10 – The 24th Sunday after Pentecost – for Sunday, October 30, 2016

“When Jesus came to that spot, he looked up and said, ‘Zacchaeus, come down at once. I must stay in your home today.’” (Luke 19:5)

zacchaeusI live in Fresno, California’s fifth most populous city. It’s closer to more National Parks than any other major city in the United States.

Even though my legal name is Lawrence, Larry is preferred. If called Lawrence, a bit of me cringes with childish guilt. When in trouble as a kid—say, for “hypothetically” cleaning my room by shoving toys, books, and other childhood paraphernalia under the bed—my parents shouted, “Lawrence George Patten, come here!”

Speaking of names, it’s PattEn rather than PattOn. I call it the “Curse of the General,” since the World War II officer has more name recognition (and more Oscar-winning films) than anyone on the “E” side of the genealogy. Continue reading →