Journey Through Holy Week: Amazement


Sometimes I read things in the bible that seem just plain weird. Like they don’t make any sense at all.

That happened to me last night. I was reading about how, the day after Jesus rode into Jerusalem, he walked back into town. On the way he started to feel hungry, and saw a fig tree. The only problem was that the fig tree was all fur coat and no knickers. (Or in this case all leaf and no fruit.) Jesus then rebuked the tree, saying it would never bear fruit again. The tree then shrivelled up and died.

This was not the part that didn’t make sense to me though. It was in the next line, which reads: The disciples were amazed.

Now, the disciples had been following Jesus for a long time. They had seen him heal the blind and lame, feed thousands with couple of fish and a few loaves of bread. They had even seen him raise the dead! But when they saw him make a tree shrivel up they were amazed.

In comparison to raising the dead, making a tree shrivel up doesn’t seem  that impressive. If I were one of the disciples I would have been asking Jesus for a better miracle!

Actually I think I do that in my own life as well.

I think that we all do. We can look at the things that God has done in our life in the past, and get angry and wonder why he isn’t blessing us like that anymore.

When actually he is still blessing us. We have just lost the wonder of it. Like an old married couple who no longer have anything to say to each other, we have let the spark in our relationship with God grow dim.

Or maybe you see what God is doing in somebody else’s life and get jealous, and question why God isn’t working in your life in the exact same way.

When he is blessing you just as much, just in a different way to your friends.

This week lets not lose the amazement of what Jesus has done in our lives.



Emotions of Holy Week: Expectation


I have to admit, I used to find all the Holy Week services a bit of a chore. I mean, going to church every night for a whole week! I’m sure I could think of better things to do with my time. (Like knitflixing, which is kind of like netflix, but with a lot more yarn!)

But this year I feel like God has really set Holy Week on my heart. The thing that has really captured my attention is all the emotions that Jesus’ followers must have felt during that one short week.

I mean, seeing Jesus enter Jerusalem as a king, only to die the most painful death imaginable a few days later, and then finding that he had come back to life again. What an emotional tornado!

It’s easy, isn’t it, to forget that those disciples didn’t already know the end of the story.

So this week I am going to write a post each day as we walk through Holy Week. This is more for my benefit, but I would love for you to join me. After all, how can we truly celebrate Easter without experiencing all the emotions leading up to it. The expectancy, sorrow, anticipation, despair they felt, before truly experiencing the joy of Easter Sunday.

So today it’s Palm Sunday. Coming from an Anglican Church, it was always kind of a big deal. I mean it was that day you got given swords crosses made out of palm leaves.

But lets just think for a minute how exciting this day must have been for Jesus’ followers. Living under Roman oppression, their king, the one who had been prophesied for generations, was finally entering into their capital city. Alright, it wasn’t in a chariot but on a donkey, but their Messiah had arrived. The one who was going to save them, and restore them.

No wonder they were all shouting Hosanna, he had finally come. And they couldn’t wait to see what he was going to do!

I’m sure they must have thought he was going to attack the Roman leaders. This was their time. The time when the whole of the Empire would see just who God’s chosen people were, and just how special they were.

I bet they weren’t expecting that Jesus was going to first go into the temple and challenge the respected leaders of their community.

A bet they didn’t realise that for victory to come, there would first have to be death. Death of the one they loved, the one they were cheering for. And I bet they couldn’t imagine what that victory would mean. That it would be a victory for the whole world, not just the Jews.