With Palm Sunday, as we enter into Holy Week; we are presented with two Gospel stories during our liturgy; the first recounts Jesus’ triumphant entry into Jerusalem, the crowds riding on a crest of excitement and popularity, hailing His presence among them; the second draws us to contemplate and commemorate Jesus’ Passion and death. In these two episodes recorded for us, we can see two postures in a relationship with Jesus, and consider our own movement towards or away from that relationship. Do we unite ourselves to Him in the glorious and exciting moments of life as the crowds did, only to turn from Him and into ourselves in moments of struggle and difficulty?
Palm Sunday is an opportunity for each of us to recognize the depth of love that God has for us – that He holds nothing back in bringing us back to Himself; that He enters into our humanity in the person of Jesus, and completely empties Himself in love – surrendering His own life on the cross – so that we can have eternal life with Him. He offers Himself not when the crowd is shouting for His exultation, but when they are howling for His blood. When the people turn from Him, Jesus turns toward the Father for them. He entered into our humanity with all its trials and sorrows, so that we could enter into His Divine life with its triumphs and joy; but we need to understand that we can’t have one without the other; and that is the ‘good news’ in what seems a tragic story; that just as we unite with Him in His self-emptying, so we unite with Him in His glory.
Praised be Jesus Christ, now and forever!