This Sunday we celebrate the beginning of the “Passion Week,” the time when Jesus entered Jerusalem with triumphal celebration. As He rode down from the Mount of Olives on a lowly donkey, people spread their clothing and lay palm branches on the road. “The whole crowd of disciples began joyfully to praise God in loud voices for all the miracles they had seen.” (Luke 19:37) Before the sun descended a few days later, their joy in seeing the anticipated Savior, was extinguished. Jesus was subjected to an ugly inhumane death.
Proverbs 13:12 says, “Hope deferred makes the heart sick, but a longing fulfilled is a tree of life.” It doesn’t take too much imagination to understand how “heart sick” many of Jesus disciples must have been. Hope deferred.
Let’s think about the people around us—in our family, our community, our world. Are they living without hope? Is their heart sick?
What is the hope of the people in Wangouman, Haiti as they wait in line patiently to scoop out a few bowlfuls of muddy water?
What is the hope of the next generation of South Sudanese children as they are consumed by starvation day after day?
What is the hope of the miners in Potosi, Bolivia as they enter the silver mines knowing that asbestosis will eventually consume them?
What is the hope of the people of Gatlinburg, TN as they recover from devastating forest fires?
Hope for them is the same hope for us.
The story of the Passion Week doesn’t end at the unjust death of Jesus. Hope begins anew with His resurrection. This week as we realize “our longing fulfilled,” let’s be mindful of those who are still “heart sick.” Let’s not hesitate to proclaim, through our action and words, the great news of our living Savior.