Joni and Friends
Palm Sunday

by Joni Eareckson Tada

“The righteous will flourish like a palm tree, they will grow like a cedar of Lebanon; planted in the house of the LORD, they will flourish in the courts of our God. They will still bear fruit in old age, they will stay fresh and green, proclaiming, ‘The LORD is upright; he is my Rock, and there is no wickedness in him.’”

Psalm 92:12-15

What a day Palm Sunday must have been! People spreading their garments on the dirt road, frantically waving branches of palm and shouting at the top of their lungs, “Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord!” Expectations were at a feverish pitch: Jesus will throw out the Romans! He’ll release us from the terrible burden of these taxes! Jesus will feed us, provide for us, and protect us. We’re ready to crown him our king!

As the week wore on, everyone’s mood shifted. People couldn’t understand why Jesus wasn’t making his move. Although he continued to heal and teach, he remained strangely aloof—a real recluse. He kept retreating to a nearby village every night, far removed from the power brokers and political hotshots in the city. Why wasn’t he getting on with the agenda? Why wasn’t he taking control? Little wonder they began to think, Maybe this man’s not all he’s cracked up to be. Perhaps he’s been pulling the wool over our eyes all this time. It was all just a fluke. The rest is history. Not more than a week passed and they were clamoring for his crucifixion.

I wonder…are we all that different? When our expectations are running high, when we think we’ve got God’s plan neatly figured, when we’ve even convinced ourselves that the King’s job is to make our lives easier, relieve our burdens, and lighten our pressures, do we cave in to doubts if God doesn’t come through?

The King’s agenda is to make you fit for service in the kingdom. He may not relieve your burdens or lighten pressures, but you can be sure he’ll do all he can to conform you to his image. This Easter week, do a double check on your praises. Let’s be certain we give Jesus praise for who he is rather than what we think he ought to be.

Blessed are you, Lord Jesus. My heart is a palm branch of praise. Hosanna in the highest. You are King!

Taken from More Precious than Silver

By Joni Eareckson Tada

Copyright © 1998
Published in Print by Zondervan, Grand Rapids

All Scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from the Holy Bible: New International Version.

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