There must have been such an immense pressure to know who you are, and to also know who you are not. I wonder how Jesus interpreted the waving palms, the cries of both joy and desperation, and excitement of the crowds that surrounded him. It was clear now that he had the attention of not just a few. It was also clear that something was expected of him. Under the power of a Roman government, people felt desperate.
What if Jesus walked among us today? Would I be among the crowd with my own desire and expectation to see this man of miracles come into his own power? To counter the chaotic country I live in? Probably. Well, totally.
But he already knew what power tasted like. His 40 days in the wilderness revealed that you must choose to give up your heart, mind, and spirit to become all-powerful. For Jesus, it wasn’t worth it. For us, it should not be worth it, either.
This is what I’m (hoping) to receive and understand more this Lenten season. As he neared what would eventually be the Cross, Jesus’ approach was intentional in that he felt no need to play down what was ahead. I’m sure he already carried the disappointment that awaited him. When the Christ mystery becomes all of who you are, then it becomes worth it to show what it means to die — both literally and figuratively — to yourself in the name of greater good.