Welcome to today's POG blog! Luke 19:37-42 NIV
“When he came near the place where the road goes down the Mount of Olives, the whole crowd of disciples began joyfully to praise God in loud voices for all of the miracles they had seen:
‘Blessed is the king who comes in the name of the Lord!’
‘Peace in heaven and glory in the highest!’
Some of the Pharisees in the crowd said to Jesus, ‘Teacher, rebuke your disciples!’
‘I tell you,’ he replied, ‘if they keep quiet, the stones will cry out.’
As he approached Jerusalem and saw the city, he wept over it…”
This passage begins with the “whole crowd of disciples” praising and worshiping Jesus. They are filled with hope and joy. They have received Christ and all of the peace he brings. To them, He is a truth so obvious that even the “stones” see it.
The passage ends with Jesus weeping over Jerusalem. Although obvious to the disciples, the people of Israel failed to recognize their new king. They were expecting a king to come in power and provide military peace/freedom from the Romans. Jesus looked on them with sadness because he had so much peace to give them (a different kind of peace), but they refused to receive Him. In the next verse in Luke, Jesus says, “If you, even you, had only known on this day what would bring you peace—but now it is hidden from your eyes.”
I wonder how often Jesus looks on me with sadness because I refuse to let him close and give me all he desires (peace). The past couple of months have been pretty crazy for me. We are in the middle of my daughter’s volleyball season (which requires lots of weekend travel), are starting my son’s basketball tournament season, things at work have been much busier than usual, and I have taken on additional responsibilities at church. Even though these are all good things, the “busy”ness has put a strain on my quiet time with God. Frankly, I have found myself just trying to get it done most days. It is no surprise that instead of having a peaceful heart, I have been stressed out and frustrated.
When I walked into church this morning and saw the palm branches everywhere and the joyful music playing, I was overwhelmed with emotion. I grew up in a liturgical church, so Palm Sunday was a jubilant celebration with much fanfare. The familiarity of the ceremony touched me profoundly. I was reminded by Jesus of how much and for how long he has been loving me. I instantly felt “back in sync” with him. I couldn’t keep from raising my hands and singing to him (raising my hands is kind of a stretch for me).
It is beautiful that when I turn to Him, rather than making me pay for my neglect, he welcomes me lovingly and gives me His peace!