After such a triumphant entry on Sunday, the events of Monday must have solidified in everyone’s mind that Jesus was here to bring a kingdom they understood. When He saw the moneychangers at the temple turning worship into a self-profiting free-for-all at the expense of the blind, poor and crippled, Jesus responded with a great upheaving of their tables and wares. “Do not make my temple something to profit from! People come here to find Me and you waylay them, barring entrance into My home. How dare you!” At that, even the children were singing His praises!
Is it any wonder that when He talked about the kingdom of God, the disciples were confused? In their minds, Rome was going to be overthrown and a new physical kingdom established. The Kingdom of God, therefore, was almost everything they didn’t expect. They didn’t expect Jesus to be with them daily. They didn’t expect him to value the shunned and the poor. They didn’t expect him to be the kind of king that says, “Come see where I live” and then spend the rest the day talking with them.
Is it any wonder they had trouble recognizing him?
Jesus was always issuing an invitation to them…and to us as well: Open your eyes. Learn to recognize what’s in front of you. Understand darkness. Learn that love is stronger. Come to know truth. Don’t worry about being seen – I will always see you. Don’t worry about success – loving Me is your success. Don’t worry about anything – remember the wind and waves? Remember the 5 loaves and 2 fishes? Remember the widow and her mite – how pleased I was with her?
Come to Me. Learn of Me. Learn how I work so you will know how to do your work. And you will find rest for your soul. There will be trouble, from within and without. But don’t forget, I am greater than your heart and have overcome the world.
The invitation to follow Him, issued against a backdrop of conspiracy and treachery, intensified as the week went on. And it does for us as well…for the invitation to us comes amidst trouble as surely as it did on that Monday long ago.
“Come to Me…I promise to always lead gently”.
ACTION: How are you experiencing God’s invitation to come to Him today? What is the trouble you feel within or without that hinders you from coming to Him? The kingdom of God is in you because the Spirit of God lives inside you. What unexpected goodness can you bring to your world?