Reading: Psalm 118:1-2 and 19-29
Verse 24: “This is the day the Lord has made; let us rejoice and be glad in it.”
Psalm 118 is a great place to begin the week that leads to Palm Sunday. The bookend verses found in verses 1 and 29 capture the spirit of the palm parade: “Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good; his love endures forever.” This is the spirit of those lining the parade route as they quoted from verse 26 as Jesus entered Jerusalem. This coming Sunday is also known as Passion Sunday. It reflects the passion of Christ for you and me that leads Jesus to the cross on Good Friday. In verses 21-22 we read, “You have become my salvation. The stone the builders have rejected has become the cornerstone.” Savior to some, enemy to others. This is one of the main narratives of the weeks ahead.
Today we focus on the palms. In his own way, Jesus will echo the words of the psalmist found in verse 19: “Open for me the gates of righteousness; I will enter and give thanks to the Lord.” Jesus, as always, will continue to walk in righteousness, all the way to the grave. He will do so thanking God all the way – so great was his love for us. In verse 24 the psalmist celebrates with these words: “This is the day the Lord has made; let us rejoice and be glad in it.” These words must’ve echoed in Jesus’ heart as he rode into Jerusalem, even though he knew what lay ahead. You see, he knew the truth of verse 1 and 29. This spirit of joy, it carried Jesus along the parade route, through the last week of his life, and on through the grave to resurrection. It will carry you and me too, each day and every day. May we choose joy. “This is the day the Lord has made; let us rejoice and be glad in it.”
Prayer: Lord God, just as the words of this song echoed that first Palm Sunday in the voices of those there, a song echoes in my heart today! “In every high and every low… Lord, you never let go of me.” How true, how true! This day I rejoice in your daily and constant presence with me. Praise be to the Lord Almighty! Amen.