Thursday, March 29, 2012

Palms and Hearts and Living Water

Pastor Meng Pu's homework assignment this week was to read and study Mark 11:1-11, and then translate it into English. Yesterday we were talking about Palm Sunday coming up, and why we should celebrate it as followers of Jesus. He asked me several times about the significance of palm branches... why did they wave palms? Why do we still use palms in our celebration? I had to confess I had no idea. I guess I've always just associated palms with the triumphant entry, but never went deeper. He seemed to think they were a symbol, significant as more...

Today when he came back, he explained it to me. The country of Israel - in fact, most of the land in that part of the world - is dry and arid, with very little lush plant life. But there are palm trees, and where there are palm trees, deep down there must be water. He said our hearts are dry too, and lifeless, and in need of water. Jesus said he is the Living Water in John 4:10, 13 - "...whoever drinks the water I give them will never thirst. Indeed, the water I give them will become in them a spring of water welling up to eternal life." When we receive Jesus into our hearts, his Living Water fills us and makes our hearts full of life.

The green, vibrant palm leaves are a symbol, the evidence of new and flourishing life - the way our hearts look when Jesus comes and fills us. How wonderful, then, that we wave palm branches as we shout: "Hosanna!" - a word which is a cry for salvation and a word of praise as we acknowledge Jesus as the one who saves.

No comments:

Post a Comment