You could hear him coming before you could see him. Except it wasn’t him who was making any noise, it was the crowds that ran alongside, or reached out to tear branches from the roadside trees to wave in exultant hosannas. Or who threw down their cloaks to carpet the well-trodden road, but which couldn’t prevent the swirls of dust rising like pillars of clouds announcing the presence of God.
When he did come into view, there didn’t seem anything remarkable about his appearance. A young man astride a donkey; a kindly, slightly bemused expression on his face, and hands strong enough to wield chisel and mallet resting gently on the neck of the colt, who bore his burden lightly.
Yet his rebuttal of those authoritarian voices who grumbled at the disturbance was spoken in a voice that did not need volume to command attention. He’d leave the crying out to others and the reverberant city walls.
So this was him, the one we’d been waiting for, the one on which all our hopes were to be pinned? The one who would stir up a revolutionary freedom and turn the known world upside down?
Here was our King… the Messiah… entering triumphantly into God’s earthly city.
As the muffled sound of the donkey’s hooves faded away, so the dust settled and everything seemed to return to normal, just one more Passover festival to celebrate or was it? Something deep inside me stirred and I wondered what the days ahead might bring. I guess we’ll just have to wait and see…