And all of a sudden we have arrived. Holy Week is here. It snuck up on me this year. While I was busy contemplating Jesus’ life and ministry, while I was thinking of the witness of the stones, while I was thinking about worship numbers during Spring Break, Holy Week was creeping closer, and all of a sudden, it is here.
Yesterday in both services, the children processed into the worship space with palms, waving them in the air as the bystanders would have done on that Jerusalem road. Yesterday in both services, we heard Jesus proclaimed a king and Lord of all. Yesterday we heard how the crowds threw cloaks on the ground and how the Pharisees told the people to be quiet. Yesterday we heard how the stones would even cry out if the people did not. But that was all yesterday.
By Friday that man will die. By Friday that man will die a prisoner’s death, a shameful death, a death called for by the same people who proclaimed him King. By Friday, we that waved the palms will be part of the crowd shouting to crucify him.
Holy Week is the holiest week of the Christian year. It is also perhaps the most baffling. It is hard to comprehend how we got to shouting for a man’s death from celebrating his coming. It is hard to wrap our heads around the Lord of the universe washing the dirty feet of sinners. It is unnerving to think of our God dying. It is a week fraught with the unimaginable. I cannot adequately describe or reflect on this week for you – you must experience it.
You are invited this Lent to be baffled and unnerved, to shout and weep, to pay attention as we walk to the cross. You are invited to read the Scriptures this week and to consider the story of your salvation. You are invited to be present for worship on Maundy Thursday at 6 pm and Good Friday at noon and 6 pm.
Monday, March 21 – Psalm 22
Tuesday, March 22 – John 13
Wednesday, March 23 – Luke 22
Thursday, March 24 – John 18
Friday, March 25 – John 19:2-37
Saturday, March 26 – John 19:38-42
Sunday, March 27 – John 20:1-18
The above image is Donatello’s Lamentation Over the Death of Christ. Notice how it pictures many different responses to the death. How will you respond?