If you went to Sunday School as a child, you undoubtedly memorized the shortest verse in the Bible. Jesus wept. I’ve always loved that verse, not just because of its length, but because it shows Jesus’ humanity and his depth of feeling. It gives us permission to be in touch with our emotions.
But yesterday, on Palm Sunday, I thought about the object of Jesus’ tears. It was us. He wept over the people who he longed to set free, but who chose bondage instead.
As this Holy Week begins, reflect with me on these verses. The first took place on the day of his Triumphal Entry, when everyone turned out to celebrate the King. The second verse occurred a couple days later, just two days before the Passover feast, which we now celebrate as the Last Supper. The true motivations of the people – wanting someone to save them politically and bring temporal peace – were about to be revealed.
As he approached Jerusalem and saw the city, he wept over it and said, “If you, even you, had only known on this day what would bring you peace—but now it is hidden from your eyes.” Luke 19:41-42
Jerusalem, Jerusalem, you who kill the prophets and stone those sent to you, how often I have longed to gather your children together, as a hen gathers her chicks under her wings, and you were not willing. Matthew 23:37
I pray that we will know the One – the only one – who can bring true and lasting peace. I pray that He will find us willing to seek our refuge in the shelter of his wings.