As Jesus walked to Jerusalem on Holy Week, He gave us an example of how we were created to walk in love every week of our lives. He demonstrated one of the greatest loves of this world, surrounding Himself with good friends on His journey. He could have walked alone. He could have saved the world in a different way, but everywhere He walked during Holy Week, He walked with His closest friends. He walked with His eyes wide open to God’s beautiful universe and all the lessons it contained. He walked with His heart wide open to the people who walked beside Him and the people He passed along His way. His love penetrated the hearts of the ones who loved Him back and darkened the hearts of those who rejected Him. He walked with His Spirit fully fixed on the good plans for the salvation of mankind and the possibility of expanding the Oneness experienced by the Trinity to all who would believe. He walked to make a new heaven and new earth possible.
Jesus put effort into building friendships while He lived on earth. He had a special friendship with the three siblings from Bethany: Mary, Martha and Lazarus. He made sure to stop by a dinner party and He brought out the best in them; Lazarus’ friendship, Martha’s service and Mary’s heart of pure worship. He was happy, loving people every day of Holy Week. He included His closest friends among the twelve disciples in special intimate interchanges and prayer. He was the honored guest at dinners, the Host of the Passover Dinner, where He met heart and soul around the table. He loved His mother and family, strengthening them to go on with their personal missions after His departure to heaven.
On Palm Sunday, He showed His love for God’s Word as He sent His disciples on a mission trip to retrieve a donkey He knew would fulfill the scriptures. He loved the sound of praise to God for His presence and salvation among the people. He loved protecting the space set aside for the Gentiles to pray from the money changers and business of worship at the temple. He loved sharing spiritual truths in parables that made the mystery of God understandable to those who wanted to know.
Jesus loved teaching the truths God sent Him to share. He loved explaining Old Testament books like the prophecy in Daniel. He loved debating with the Religious Leaders, knowing that He had the answers they were too boxed-in to believe. He loved washing the disciples’ dirty, undignified feet, demonstrating the servant leadership He expected of each one of them.
He loved being One with the Father and desiring that we could be One with them. He loved glorifying His Father and doing everything God told Him to do. He loved knowing that though the disciples scattered, and Peter denied Him, He could have confidence that the disciples would carry on the work God had for them to do in saving the whole world.
Jesus walked the greatest 650 yards of pure and sacrificial love down the hard road to Calvary. It was His love for God and then us that held Him still in the midst of the mocking, spitting, hitting, and, ultimately, nailing of Him to the cross. He loved keeping Sabbath Rest in the tomb, and he loved showing His followers and all of us that He has conquered sin in our lives and that we can be with Him again. Romans 8:36-39 says:
“As it is written: For your sake we face death all day long;
we are considered as sheep to be slaughtered. No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.”
Jesus walked the Holy path of love and we are forever grateful. How will you love this Holy Week? Will you keep your eyes, heart and spirit open to God this week?