Monday, March 15, 2010

Palm Branches, Cloaks, and the King of Kings

(Note: this is the devo I wrote on Friday. I didn't have internet when I wrote it, so it didn't get posted until today. Sorry for the delay).

Friday's Reading: 1 Samuel 13-14; Luke 19:28-48

It’s hard to believe that Easter is already upon us. In a couple of weeks churches everywhere will celebrate a day called “Palm Sunday” a day in which Jesus road into Jerusalem on a donkey, and the people shouted out and praised Him as Lord and Savior. The telling of this event in Luke is quite brief. The aspect of the story that I love, here, was how unafraid Jesus’ disciples were to yell at the top of their lungs that here rides the “king who comes in the name of the Lord” (Luke 19:38). For once they gave him the praise that was due.

The other gospels give similar accounts of this day. Matthew 21:8-9 tells us that a large crowd of people laid their cloaks and palm branches on the road crying “Hosanna to the Son of David. Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord! Hosanna in the highest.”

What a beautiful expression of adoration for their king. But sadly, many would soon lose hope. They expected their king of kings to react quite differently. They didn’t expect him to die on the cross. What they didn’t realize was that they would soon be given something quite greater. While Jesus didn’t immediately come with a sword and vanquish their enemies, he bridged the gap between sinful man and heaven. He took the sins of the world upon his own soldiers.

On Palm Sunday we celebrate Jesus’ triumphant entry into Jerusalem. And we start to think about what the coming week would have had in store for him. I, myself, am thankful that the story doesn’t end with Palm Sunday, with the Last Supper or with the Crucifixion. Instead, it ends with Easter. That is the most beautiful day of all!

This year I’m pregnant with our first child. My heart is filled with the daunting task of teaching a young one all about great gift God has given us. I want to truly appreciate this gift for myself, so that I can pass it on to our child. I pray that one day soon, in the coming years, this young one will find a personal relationship with Christ. Easter is that important to me. I can’t help but be filled with excitement when I think about sharing this great gift with my little one.

Easter means birth, life and renewal to me. I think of the cross, of spring flowers, of chickadees being born. And I think of the beautiful life growing inside of me. Today I’m so thankful for my King of Kings that, one day, long ago, rode into Jerusalem on a donkey.

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