Sunday, March 20, 2016

Palm Sunday and Holy Week

Many people look forward to Palm Sunday as we enter our churches waving palms in excitement that Jesus of Nazareth is going to be crowned King and Messiah. We leave our worship sobered up because we realize the tragic fate that awaits him.

I caution people to be aware of the spiritual events that happen during Holy Week that we often do not anticipate. It is the week when the Prince of Darkness rules over the world. We can see this when our sensitivities become heightened, an old wound is re-opened, a trusted friend hurts or betrays us, when we are waiting for closure on an issue that keeps us vulnerable, or we become too busy to even pay attention to the feelings of Jesus as he moves slowly through his Passion.  Some personal event gets worked up in us, which causes us to focus on our swirling emotions.

It is important to diminish the drama. Hold steady. Keep yourself in balance somehow and realize that forces beyond you are working to derail you.

Instead, keep your focus upon Jesus or the steadfast way that God abides by us. After all, he is the ultimate victor. Satan may have this week, but he has no power unless we give it to him. Giving compassion to Jesus will keep us focused, not on ourselves, but upon the work he is doing for us, the love he is fulfilling for us. Simply be with him. Hold him. Sit with him. Abide by him. He will teach you to trust more fully in God. His obedience of faith saves us. Be the companion to him that he always is to you, and he will reward you for your kindness.

His ultimate victory over sin and death and the forces of this world is on the horizon. Keep steady and we’ll get through this week. Then, we will share in his joy because he has become the victor of the world.