Ears to Hear: Reflections on Holy Week, Sunday
As Jesus entered Jerusalem, His entrance was incredibly significant in both form and substance. The form of His entrance was prophesied by Zechariah: “Behold, your king is coming to you, humble, and mounted on a donkey, andon a colt, the foal of a beast of burden.” (Matthew 21:5) The form, coming on a simple, lowly donkey, spoke to the substance. He was coming, not as conquering king who would have ridden in on a horse, but as a peaceful king. However, rather than being a triumphal entry, it was an ironic entry.
The irony was reflected in the growing tension between the true nature of Jesus’ kingship and what many of His followers wanted His kingship to look like. They wanted a king who would deliver them from their circumstances (an ugly Roman occupation) but He was interested in and committed to so much more. Jesus graciously and patiently refused to argue with their assumptions but quietly and persistently dropped clues about the cross as He resolutely walked toward it.
Bridging the gap between who He is and who we think we want Him to be requires a humble, listening faith. In 2 Corinthians 5:7, we are encouraged to “walk by faith, not by sight.” In the midst of life, we frequently want sight and that’s what can get us in trouble. For the crowds in Jerusalem on that first palm Sunday, they could “see” the Messiah liberating them and bringing in a new age for the nation. However, faith is what would give them an appreciation for what He was really up to. What we “see” is informed by us but walking by faith is informed by Him.
Today, take a few minutes and examine what you are seeing with your senses and abilities versus what you are trusting because of His input. Tilden Edwards comments: “We always have the choice of seeing reality as it is and being with it, or seeing reality as our fears and desires warp it. When we know this choice exists, then our real freedom is born.”
How will He enter your life today? Will you welcome Him as the One who can help you accomplish your goals (shaped by your fears and desires) or as the One who will reorient and reframe your goals? Living life as we were created to live means that we walk by faith in the One who rode into town on a donkey … humble, kind, patient, and determined to not let us settle for anything but reality … which is Him in all His glory.