the silences of Palm Sunday, Lent endings begin, 3

26 Mar
silence of my lamb

Rejoicing is singing, shouting, dancing, crying. Rejoicing is loud and full; complete and joyous, again and again. Jesus enters Jerusalem according to Matthew’s New Testament narrative with such ‘hallelujahs’. And not just Matthew speaks of palms touching Jesus – both in physical form and in words. So does the Old Testament,

The Old Testament prophesied of our Palm Sunday in Zecharaiah 9:9 – “Rejoice greatly, O daughter of Zion! Shout aloud, O daughter of Jerusalem! Behold, your king is coming to you; righteous and having salvation is he, humble and mounted on a donkey, on a colt, the foal of a donkey.”

Many have spoke and written of the embedded ironies of these two passages in light of the events of the week after Jesus’ entrance: his betrayals, arrest, tortures, trials, and crucifixion. The multitudes, as well as church and government officials and his family friends and disciples, leave him to a cruel death. Rejoicing has gone silent.

But, the silence of rejoicing multitudes is not my focus on this 3rd end of Lent reflection. My focus is on Jesus’ silence.

Entering Jerusalem, hearing acclaims, absorbing hallelujahs, Jesus had to have an emotional overflow. He was experiencing love, adoration, unconditional acceptance. Joy, rejoicing joy, over and over again. Yet…

internally Jesus had to feel waves, whispers, of sadness. As an all knowing God, he knows what is to be next: Roman Crucifixion.

Death from the hands of the universe’s originators of unholy tortuous deaths. Slow death by a thousand and one cuts. A hanging, a thirsty, breathless death.

And Jesus, as he enters Jerusalem must also have heard and seen the – his – own coming internal cries: His coming cries to his disciples ( and especially to Judas, his list one ), his sorrow of brokenness – his broken heart and mind; his cry of, to, ‘Abba’ -‘Father.’ These ‘silent’ cries, Jesus hears. But…

Riding on this donkey, riding on the hallelujahs of rejoicing, Jesus is silent. He is silent while he hears the coming cries of brokenness. Why? Because Jesus is enjoying, living, rejoicing in the present moment; his present moment, his ride.

My reflective thought, my joy from knowing how Jesus is riding ?…

Jesus is not overwhelmed with sadness this day of rejoicing, what we now call Palm Sunday. He is riding, living in the moment.

He puts aside his knowledge of the coming wailings; he puts aside sadnesses. He lives in the present moment. Rejoicing in the present moment, the past and the future do not guide Jesus entrance, his present, his ride. He lives in each and every moment. Because He lives, I can rejoice, always. And always, rejoice.

Lord, today, this morning, these moments help me to rejoice in the gift of my present, the gift you give me. Ride with my thoughts, my worries, my regrets. Silent them. Silence all but rejoicing.

Matthew 21:1-11

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