The Author

Holy Week

As I’ve thought about that last week of Jesus’ life, the life that ended on Friday, it occurs to me that so much of what happened in those days was so ordinary, a reflection of the experiences that we all have in the days and weeks of our lives.

Some days are celebrations. Whether they understood it or not, that crowd that greeted Jesus’ entry into Jerusalem were caught up in a spreading fervor as he made his way into the city. Some did know what they were shouting about, but others were just chiming in because we all want and need a little celebration in our lives. As much as we might like to think of those folks as holy, a good number of them were like a crowd at a football game, cheering because everyone else is. After all, who doesn’t need a little joy in their everyday life?

Life is not all celebration, though. Sometimes it’s just confusion and uncertainty. When Jesus gathered his disciples on that Thursday night for that last meal with them, most, if not all, of them, had no idea what was happening. Listen closely to the story of the time together around that table, and you can feel the uneasiness, that sense of not knowing that leads to foreboding. It’s not hard to put yourself in the shoes of those disciples because such an emotion is part of life.

Then, of course, there is the trial and execution. Even after everything Jesus had told them, none of them was prepared for those events. How could they have been? Even with all the warnings, there had to be an expectation that there would be another way, some kind of rescue. I am reminded of a woman who was having a particularly hard time with her marriage. She said, “I didn’t think I was signing up for this.” But she was, because such moments happen all the time.

Such is life. And, that’s good news. During Holy Week, all packed into just a few days are joy and confusion and death. Right in the middle of it all, the center of attention, is Jesus. Jesus –right in the middle of the ordinary of life. That’s what makes all this Holy.