I feel frustrated this morning. Restless. I’m not entirely sure why, but I know part of it is what I experienced this morning as I headed into some quiet.
There are some things I have been praying about for a long time — really important stuff with the people I care about the most. I have been taking it to God in a passionate way on their behalf for a long time. This morning I just felt frustrated. I’m struggling with the question of whether it matters. Why does God seem so quiet on some things for so long?
As I have thought about Palm Sunday and Easter over the last couple of weeks, I have again struggled to understand why some things had to play out the way they did. As I thought about it, I could sense myself getting angry at how the people so passionately welcomed Jesus on Palm Sunday, and then, with equal passion, turned on him a short time later. Then this morning, a light came on for me, triggered by some of the expectations I was having.
On Palm Sunday, it seems people could have been worshiping Jesus with an agenda. They had to be incredible weary of the harsh and cruel Roman rule. But now this miracle worker came to town, and their time had come. They had to believe He was the one, who would finally deliver them from the Roman oppressors. And so with excitement, deep passion, and likely some righteous anger, they welcomed Jesus to the city as the long-awaited answer to their struggle and their relentless prayers.
But soon they realized that might not be the case. He came with a different agenda. They heard the message that this Jesus was concerned with their hearts. He wanted them to have a deep connection, and a life changing relationship with the Creator. Perhaps they started to realize that their agenda — that their expectations might not be met. Soon enough, because they worshiped with that expectation, their worship changed to disappointment, disengagement, and anger.
Easy for me to judge them — until I made some connections to my own journey this morning. The truth is, it is hard to keep pursuing Him when outer circumstances do not seem to change. But I have to ask myself some hard questions: Can I pursue Him… worship Him with no agenda, no expectations… just for who He is? That seems to be a lifelong process. I will keep you posted.