It wasn’t triumphal, not in anyway we mean the word.
Jesus came in to town riding on the back of a donkey with coats and cloaks for a seat and palm fronds on the road.
Cheers rang out.
I wonder how far they cheered him in. Or what the crowds expected or who made up the crowd. Did he make it to the temple? Did they turn on him early in the week? Did they turn on him by the end of the parade? Did they even know who he was?
Was it a ploy contra Ceasar? Contra empire?
Did Jesus just waltz in on from the opposite side of the city to steal the thunder of Pilate and Herod?
The thing is, Jesus like just about any leader or person we’ve ever met – doesn’t live up to expectations. The hype get’s in the way. Our perspective get’s warped. We get wrapped up in our own heads and cannot see past it.
It’s sort of like picking up a good novel and obsessing over it and forgetting the real world.
Except, in this case, and in many others, it turns violent.
Jesus, our neighbors, our families, our selves – our perspectives should not be the governing reality of who and what we are. We twist up our smiles and get excited when we live into those perspectives those idea-worlds and dream-images we’ve crafted for ourselves, and we twist those smiles even more when we fail or they fail, or Jesus fails to fit the mold.
It happened in Jerusalem.
It went pretty quickly from Hosannah to Crucify him.
The encounter of grace we may need is to help us see where we do this to ourselves, our neighbors, our brothers and sisters in Christ, and to our own vision of salvation in Christ. God’s grace shatters the dream-image of life to show us the grace-gift of life, of neighbor, of friend, and of Jesus – of our Lord.
Consider it all grace when we encounter the real and learn to love the real-self, the real-neighbor, and (above all) the real-God.