All hail King Jesus! All hail Emmanuel!
Emmanuel, God with us, in our midst, loving and healing and saving us. But hearts were and are dark.
Zacharias was filled with the Holy Spirit, and prophesied, saying:
Blessed be the Lord God of Israel,
For He has visited us and accomplished redemption for His people,
And has raised up a horn of salvation for us
To show mercy toward our fathers,
And to remember His holy covenant,
The oath which He swore to Abraham our father,
To grant us that we, being rescued from the hand of our enemies,
Might serve Him without fear,
In holiness and righteousness before Him all our days.
To give to His people the knowledge of salvation
By the forgiveness of their sins,
Because of the tender mercy of our God,
With which the Sunrise from on high will visit us,
To shine upon those who sit in darkness and the shadow of death,
To guide our feet into the way of peace.
From Luke 1
Palm fronds waved and coats were strewn on the road and He rode into Jerusalem on the colt of donkey. To ultimately bring peace.
Yet eyes did not see and ears did not hear, only what they wanted to, missing the immensity of the visitation.
We still do that, don’t we?
We can see God as what and who we want Him to be. To benefit us, to make our lives easier, to fulfill our wishes.
Glossing over the mess and the pain and the sacrifice of love that brought Him to earth in a stable and took Him all the way to the Cross.
He entered Jerusalem to fulfill the ancient plan, laying down His life and dying, the greatest example of love we have ever seen. Yet so many missed it. So many still miss it.
And Jesus wept.
But what about you? And what about me? On this Monday of Holy Week, where do we find our hearts?
Contemplating the Passion of the Christ?
How blessed is the man whose strength is in You,
In whose heart are the highways to Zion!
Passing through the valley of Baca they make it a spring;
The early rain also covers it with blessings.
They go from strength to strength,
Every one of them appears before God in Zion.
Or are we just “me” focused like so many of our days?
Running about all crazy and hectic, pushing to meet deadlines at work, scrambling when the babysitter calls to say she is sick, worrying over bills unpaid, arguing with our spouse, picking out the perfect flowers for our Easter table or buying yet more candy and trinkets for little Easter baskets?
And if all we do is swirl in our daily madness, we too will miss Him this Holy Week.
As we wait for His glorious return someday, we will miss Him on any day when we shift our focus earth bound and not heavenly.
And how He misses us!
Each day is a holy, precious gift and life is sacred. He came that we might have life abundant, but only when we are abundantly abiding in Him.
So as we begin the countdown to Calvary let’s stop throughout each day, perhaps marking times of prayer and contemplation at dawn, noon and bedtime.
Let’s hold His passion in our hearts until we sweat drops of blood.
Let’s wait in holy, grateful anticipation for the Resurrection with hearts that bend the knee, contrite. Seeking forgiveness for our sins. Giving praise to the Almighty.
Let’s be like Jesus. Let’s let this last week of Lent and this magnificent season of Resurrection restore and renew our hearts aright.
Let’s offer our hearts to Him wanting nothing more than to know and love him better, to obey Him rightly, and to serve Him faithfully.
Be devoted to one another in brotherly love; give preference to one another in honor; not lagging behind in diligence, fervent in spirit, serving the Lord; rejoicing in hope, persevering in tribulation, devoted to prayer, contributing to the needs of the saints, practicing hospitality.
Touching hearts, helping others open to life in Him forevermore…