Hope on a Donkey!
I believe, help my unbelief.
That is my faith.
Today is Palm Sunday, and it was quite a parade at church! Over one hundred children processed down the aisle, all smiles, and waved their palm branches. You could call it the pre-party before the big show!
You have no idea how much I want to believe in that man who rode a donkey through the city of Jerusalem over two thousand years ago. The man, who in his short tenure on earth, managed to wear the hat of prophet, healer, teacher, mystic, friend, and savior. Jesus made us believe in a world that is so different than the reality in which we live. A world where healing was possible, bellies and souls were nourished, dignity championed, and peace was the law of the land. Jesus showed us how Love could make things right and heaven was more than a fairy tale. No wonder, so many crowded the streets, palm branches in hand, eager to catch a glimpse of Hope riding in on a donkey.
So why the unbelief? Why do we have such a hard time staying the course of faith? Trusting? We bow our heads, confess our misdeeds, say our prayers, make promises to be holy on Sunday, and then by the time Thursday rolls around, (some weeks, it’s Monday!) we have turned our back on God, taken up the reigns of our lives, and given in to the lesser versions of ourselves. We slip into doubt. Often without even being aware of it.
I struggle with that man on the donkey. When the reality of this world rattles me, I want to snap my fingers and demand that he heal the blind, walk on water, do something miraculous so that I have proof that he is still the hero of my heart. There is so much suffering. Too many question marks. We have so little control over our lives. I can quickly lose my courage. As I sit at the bedside of someone who is dying, I am frightened. I turn on the news and the evil overwhelms me. I fold after receiving another piece of bad news. I get lost in the wilderness of this world.
“God, I believe, help my unbelief,” I pray.
It’s my stubborn soul that won’t let me give up or give in to the world.
Shame on me for thinking my faith would be served up on a silver platter. So, I pick myself up by my faith bootstraps. I commit to live deeper. I go to the Table and feed my hungry soul with bread and wine. I walk in nature. I step out of my comfort zone and do something wildly sacrificial for another. I laugh. I heal. I love. I make peace. I forgive. I bless. I stay the course.
And then like a miracle, Hope shows up on a donkey. And I believe again.
Live in Hope,