This weekend (Palm Sunday) you are going to receive a palm. Some folks will put the whole strand behind their crucifix. Some will weave it. Others may come home, put it somewhere for a few days, and then it somehow slips out of sight.
I’d like to make a suggestion. Instead of putting the whole strand in one place, cut it up into several pieces. Put a piece at your workplace, near the computer, perhaps. Put a piece in the kitchen, near the sink. Tape a third piece to the bathroom or bedroom mirror. How about a piece taped to the ledge right below the car’s speedometer?
Why? So that we are constantly reminded of all that Jesus endured out of tremendous love for us.
It can remind us of how Jesus wrestled with God’s will in the Garden, just as we have so often wrestled with that Will in our own lives. Sometimes we surrender, other times not.
It can remind us of Jesus’ friends sleeping through His agony, and Judas betraying Him. It can help us to forgive those who weren’t there when we needed them, or those who hurt us deeply with words or actions.
It can remind of us the indignity of Jesus being shuttled back and forth between Pilate and Herod, and help us to have a little bit of compassion for harried service people.
It can remind you of the crown of thorn the scourging, the heavy weight of the cross, the nails all borne for love of us. Maybe we can see the palm piece and offer our own sufferings for the person in the world who most needs it at that moment.
“Father forgive them today you will be with me in paradise.” The palm can remind you of the fact that no sin of ours is greater than God’s love for us.
Ultimately, it can remind us of the last words of Jesus: “Father, into your hands I commend my spirit.” That is, after all, the finest possible expression of our faith, hope, and love.
Blessings to you, dear friend!