Righteous, Victorious, and Humble

“Rejoice, O people of Zion!
Shout in triumph, O people of Jerusalem!
Look, your king is coming to you.
He is righteous and victorious,
yet he is humble, riding on a donkey—
riding on a donkey’s colt.” (Zechariah 9:9)

Righteous, victorious, and… humble?

It’s such an odd combination. Here You come—righteous and victorious—just chilling on the back of a young donkey. What kind of hero comes traipsing into town on anything less than a majestic steed?

You came to save the world. You came to conquer death. And during Your triumphal entry, You took a moment to consider a donkey. As You’ve done all throughout history, You overlooked the obvious choice and went with the one that would leave people scratching their heads for thousands of years to come.

Why a donkey, Lord?

It’s no wonder Your people were confused. Although they studied the prophecies, they didn’t know You meant the donkey thing literally. After all, that chapter also hints at a great battle. At liberation.

But given the hindsight, I cannot help but wonder… When you told Your people they would be drenched with blood, You didn’t mean the blood of their enemies, did You?

You said they would be drenched like the corners of the alter. That implies a sacrifice rather than a war.

You called Your people to a different kind of battle—a different way of life—while we remain too blinded by our own expectations to see that You’ve wanted bigger things for us than we have ever wanted for ourselves.

Remove the stars from our eyes so that we might finally see the constellations, the planets, the galaxies.

What You Became

Today is a day that we celebrate sacrifice – the ultimate sacrifice where the Son of God entered the world and surrendered His life to restore us to Himself. In honor of this hauntingly beautiful day, I’ve composed the following letter to the God who saves:

How did You do it? How did You endure the pain of crucifixion? How did You suffer through the taunting and torture and love them anyway? How did You find it in Your heart to forgive those who meant only harm? What did You see deep in their souls that would cause You to love them? To love me?

How Your heart must have grieved when Your people screamed the words, “We have no king but Caesar!” Peter was not the only one who denied You that day. The very people You fashioned with Your hands cried out for Your destruction on that day… and You knew that they would. When You elected to come to earth, You foresaw that day. How did You feel, knowing that the creation You delight in found no delight in You?

Even as You were dying, You whispered words that would free us. “Father, forgive them. They know not what they do.” And by the time we realized what it was that we did, it was too late. Tho soldier only fell to his knees when the earth and sky trembled – when the Father roared in pain. The earth shuddered with sobs, but the human heart remained unmoved on the day Your words came true. The rocks did cry out when no one else dared to speak Your Name.

And for three days, the world was a dark and lonely place.

Then You came again.

To a people most undeserving, You lavished extravagant love.

I stand in awe of who You are and what You became for me.

No Greater Words

“And when Jesus had cried out again in a loud voice, he gave up his spirit. At that moment the curtain of the temple was torn in two from top to bottom. The earth shook, the rocks split and the tombs broke open. The bodies of many holy people who had died were raised to life.” -Matthew 18:50-52

Sometimes I’m at a loss to say what I want to say. There are no greater words than the words God gave to man that we may know Him. And there are no greater words that I could say in celebration of Easter than the magic of what happened in the moment Jesus surrendered His life.

The temple curtain tore in two, the earth shook, the rocks split, those who were once dead walked the streets of Jerusalem…

I am filled with awe and wonder. I’m rendered speechless at the power of my God. Creation trembled at the death of its Maker, and shook with joy at His resurrection.

Celebrate. Jesus is alive. And my words will never be great enough to convey the wonder of the miracle of Easter.