The crowd cheered with hysterical anticipation as the “King of the Jews” entered their capital city. Waving palm branches, they saluted Messiah, shouting “Hosanna—God save us!” Yet they had no idea what they were welcoming. Within a handful of days they would wave angry fists and shout “Crucify” to the very same man. What they expected of Jesus was the exact opposite of what played out before them in a mere five days.
So what did you envision when you welcomed your SAFE (Step/Adoptive/Foster/Etc.) child into your home? Hopefully, you were more prepared than I was, but I’m sure you’ve encountered a few surprises along the way—many of which have left you heartbroken and despondent, even angry.
And what kind of mom did you imagine you’d be? I’m sure at times you’ve exceeded your expectations, but I have a suspicion you have let yourself down far more than you’ve impressed yourself.
Did you enter this parenting venture cheerfully, waving your frond in motherly pride? Or maybe you thought God would lay those branches like a red carpet before your feet—a beautiful, comfortable, easy path to traverse. But once you got inside the walls of reality, things turned less than cheerful, didn’t they? Celebrating turned to wailing, and dancing to tantrums as you realized this new role actually called for . . . death.
Death to your strengths. Death to pride. Death to a dream.
And what happened to your palm leaves then? Were they used as fuel in the fires of disillusionment during the cold and fearful night of judgment? Were they used as rods to whip the back of your god as it seemed to turn on you?
I promise you, if it’s Thursday, Friday, or Saturday in your life, Sunday is coming! Resurrection is just around the corner! And once you’ve experienced the defeat of disappointment, agony, and death, you will understand God’s purposes are much broader than your expectations, more beautiful than your dreams, and more encompassing than your hopes.
So let your presumptions be crucified! Raise that palm branch as a flag of victory! Grasp it in faith that God’s story is not yet finished. Cry “Hosanna!”—not as one expecting deliverance from your oppression but as one full of hope in the Infinite One will accomplish . . .
. . . exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think . . . (Ephesians 3:20 NKVJ).
copyright March 2016 by Cheri Johnson