Monday, April 2, 2012

A fickle kind of people

My favorite holiday has always been Easter. Even as a small child I remember going to church during Holy Week. We grew up Catholic and would attend Stations of the Cross at least once. I was young but listened to the story of betrayal and pain. I would say the prayers and I remember tears in my eyes. I would get so mad at those people yelling "Crucify him" at my Jesus. How could they? When just a week ago they cried out His praises? Terrible people.

I am a few years older and just a few wiser. My perspective has changed. I still listen to the story in awe. Tear still spring to my eyes and my throat closes. But terrible people? No. Fickle? Yes. Fickle meaning likely to change or not constant or loyal in affection. So familiar.

We as a people tend to sway. This way and that. Whatever way the "wind" takes us. We believe this today and that tomorrow. We fight for and believe in a cause until another catches out eyes. Relationships fade in and out. What catches our eye in this instant may not the next.

As I turn to those people who shouted Hosanna on Psalm Sunday, I also look to the same group who would cry for His blood less that a week later. What happened in a week? One of my theories is in relationship. It is much easier to walk away from an idea than a person. Those who called for the King that day, did they know Him? Or were they just swept in the excitement of an idea? Did they know the person, the heart of Christ or just who he claimed to be? No. They couldn't have.

But then there is also those who did know him. And while they were not crying out for so called justice, they were not exactly fighting for His freedom either. The Bible tells us that Jesus began this journey alone with tearful prayer in the garden. Although Peter strikes out at the soldier when he is first confronted, hours later he denies even knowing Him. All are silent. Silent by fear? Silent by lack of trust? Silent by uncertainty and lack of conviction. How could you be so wrong about something that looked so right?

Two groups of people. Those who never really knew Him, but rather shouted His praises one day and clamored for His death the next. The majority of the people. Content with religion bot relationship. More interested in the comfort of day to day and certainly not into fighting for justice.

But the second group does give me pause. The ones who sat at His feet. Easy enough for us to read the Easter Story and ask how? To claim that I would never. But do the doubts of the disciples plague us  today? Would fear stop us? Unmet expectations have us sitting silently as they lead our Savior away? Sometimes it is easy to sit in judgement of situations we have not yet found ourselves in.

Every year I ponder the Easter Story again. Such an amazing story of love. Relentless love on the part of our God. Willing to go to the very end for people who never deserved any of it to begin with. Psalm Sunday is a day I love. A day of praise. A day where we all gathered to say Hosanna! Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord.

But then I remember the rest of the story. And pray. Pray that when the darkness comes, as it always does, I will remember the days of praise. That I will run back to His faithfulness. To His unfailing compassion, love mercy...and ultimately...His sacrifice.

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