“Hosanna to the Son of David; blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord; hosanna in the highest.”
The large crowd preceding and following Jesus kept crying and saying, “hosanna,” an expression of joyful praise and adoration; while the crowd in Jerusalem waiting for him was shaken and taken aback asking, “who is this?” [Matthew 21:1-11]
Every Palm Sunday, our Lord Jesus goes to Jerusalem to the temple of God, to find a crowd curious to see the prophet and the Son of David. At this particular time of the year, our Lord Jesus knocks on the door of our hearts just to find areas kept un-surrendered – still curious and uncertain if indeed personal desires are worth entrusting to the Lord.
On this 39th day of Lent, which crowd are we exactly with? Do we belong to the crowd who cries “hosanna” in praise of the Son of God, or are we still ‘lukewarm’ when it comes to our knowledge and acceptance of Jesus? Our Lord never ceases to knock on the door of our hearts. He keeps coming back despite our hurtful rejection. it is understandable though that the reason we automatically reject him is because he comes to pierce us to the core. He opens up the areas of our heart that are almost rotten because of sin. He lights up the darkest spots which are almost dead because of the un-forgiveness, pride, greed, hatred, wrath, lust, among others, that we have kept for so long, and keep holding onto. This is why it hurts. This is why we reject Jesus. This is why we are still half-hearted in letting him enter to our hearts – the temple of God.
The promise of God, however, is not just to send someone to get into the core of our heart and soul to cleanse us; but also, to redeem us from sin. He sent someone who “did not regard equality with God… rather, he emptied himself… coming in human likeness.” [Philippians 2:6-11] He was 100% God and 100% human. Like us, he also suffered; but unlike most of us, “he humbled himself, becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on the cross.” He was exalted by God the Father because of this obedience and complete dying to self despite his apprehension as human. Jesus did not want to be mocked and spit upon, neither did he want to die on the cross. He was fearful too, but he surrendered to the Father’s will. Therefore, the savior that God the Father sent understands where we are coming from. He is compassionate and merciful because he feels our pains and struggles as humans. Jesus, as our redeemer is at work within us, lighting our paths so we no longer dwell in the darkness of sin.
As we come closer to the Holy Week, may we rejoice in Christ Jesus who overcame death for our salvation. May we, as well, own his victory into the core of our heart and soul to bring ourselves to the path that he has paved for us – that is changing for the better and dying to oneself. The Lord is at hand, may we entrust to him our worries, anxieties and dreams beginning today.
Hosanna in the highest!
I honor you in all your glory!
You are my Lord and my salvation!
You are my refuge!
I am your servant, use me to fulfill God’s promise.
Break my sinful heart and replace it with yours.
Cleanse me to be worthy of being the temple of the Father.