Sunday, March 24
The Lord’s Day
Minute for Mission: Passion/Palm Sunday
As at so many schools, athletics are crucial to the social structure and school pride at my own, Ballard High in Louisville, Kentucky. When a big game approaches, we cheer and laud our team, overflowing with excitement. The players are universally given better treatment than anyone else in the school for a brief period of time. We even refer to ourselves as being part of the team. Anticipation tides us over until the game. Soon, game day arrives.
We are overconfident and prideful. The team enters, and we go wild with applause. We eagerly await the referee’s whistle indicating the start of the game. When we score the first several points, we become cocky. We do not believe there is any way we can lose. Often, we are correct. Our team does brilliantly, and we continue to sing their praises until the approach of the next thrilling game.
However, we are not able to win every time out. Sometimes we go down—and we go down hard. Our school’s athletic reputation takes a hit, and we become resentful, searching for someone to blame for this. We generally place the blame on the shoulders of the players. The people we were so eager to associate ourselves with earlier suddenly become pariahs in the halls. We are fickle creatures, unwilling to be seen talking to them until they are considered “cool” again.
Jesus experienced this cold-hearted isolation as well. The people lined the streets, praising and giving thanks for him. Jesus received a portion of the recognition, honor, and respect he deserved from the people. He did not boast, however, nor did he claim himself to be the rightful emperor, king, or supreme authority. I think that some of the people I know could learn a thing or two from our Lord and be less like the fickle people who lauded Jesus one day and crucified him the next.
Let us pray
Father, we thank you for this Palm Sunday and for your ability to forgive us for being such an inconstant people. Help us to honor your son, Jesus, the way he deserves, each and every day. Amen.
Sunday Lectionary and Hymns
All Glory, Laud, and Honor
PH 88, HB 187
Ps. 118:1–2, 19–29
This Is the Day the Lord Hath Made
PH 230, HB 69
Lord, Speak to Me, That I May Speak
PH 426, HB 29
All Hail the Power of Jesus’ Name!
PH 142 and 143, HB 132
Go to Dark Gethsemane
PH 97, HB 193
O Sacred Head, Now Wounded
PH 98, HB 194