Each year, one week before Easter, Christians observe Palm Sunday, also known as the Triumphal Entry. The Bible describes Jesus’ entry into Jerusalem as an event filled with excitement, singing and praises from crowds of people who had finally recognized Jesus as their promised Messiah. In the Gospel of Mark the event is described this way: “Many people spread their cloaks on the road, while others spread branches they had cut in the fields. Those who went ahead and those who followed shouted, "Hosanna!" "Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord!" Blessed is the coming kingdom of our father David!" "Hosanna in the highest!" (Mark 11:7-10)
So, what happened? Within just a few days the jubilant blessings of “Hosanna” had turned to blood-seeking cries of “Crucify Him”. We find this same Jesus… once celebrated and revered by large crowds, now hanging on a cross, with only his mother and a few close followers there on his behalf. Where did every body go?
I’m sure that most of his closest followers were in hiding, afraid to share Jesus’ cruel punishment. But, I suspect that others who were one time followers of Jesus had turned away because he did not meet their expectations. You see, the Jews knew the scriptures and prophesy well…and were anticipating a messiah who was an earthly king, like King David, who would come restore the temple and rescue them from Roman oppression. Jesus was indeed there to do those things, just not in the way they expected. The heavenly Kingdom Jesus came to deliver was far greater than they would ever have imagined. And, Since Jesus, did not match their narrow definition of the Messiah, they missed out on him entirely.
My friend, please do not let this happen to you. So many people become Christians with the expectation that once they do, their lives will be free from problems. They see Jesus as a sort of cosmic genie, granting wishes in the form of answered prayers. Then, when life gets hard they get frustrated and decide that Jesus must not be the real thing because he’s not jumping in to rescue them.
But, the truth is that our Heavenly Father sometimes allows us short term suffering to accomplish His long-term goals for our lives. He’s concerned with our spiritual needs far more than our physical ones. What is most important to him is our eternity and where we will choose to spend it.
Understand this and your expectations will be met, allowing you to see Jesus for the everlasting savior he longs to be in your life.