Who knew? Who knew that when the palm-waving folks cried “Hosanna!” - it would be so apropos for you and me today? Hmmm. Anxiety is high these days for a myriad of reasons. I interface with a lot of people worldwide, and there is a range between those who can’t watch the news anymore because it makes them so anxious and depressed to those who can’t stop watching the news because they feel they must stay abreast of every single happening because it gives them an illusion of control. To be sure, our complex circumstances are unique and varied, but the first century anxieties were high too as Rome ruled with an iron grip. Jesus now leaves the safe haven of his friends’ home in Bethany and begins his move toward the cross by way of Jerusalem. Click to read: http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=John%2012:12-19&version=NKJV&interface=print The town is abuzz, overflowing with Jewish pilgrims who are in town to observe the Passover celebration. Word is out - Jesus is on his way into the city! His disciples accompany him, as do quite a few others from Bethany. Two groups of people go out to meet him—those who already believe in him and those who are there for Passover and have heard about this One who has raised a man from the dead. Could it be true? Why yes, they see Lazarus for themselves! What kind of man is this who can call a dead man from the grave… open the eyes of the man born blind make the lame man walk, turn ordinary water into wine … the one who calls himself I AM. Why, in all the land, there is no one like Jesus. Of course, folks have to see him for themselves . . . if Jesus can do all these things, he can surely free them from Rome’s tyranny as well! As we look back, it would have made better sense for Jesus to come into Jerusalem in a stealth manner, right? After all, the authorities wanted him dead. Not Jesus. It is his time. Jesus comes riding on a donkey, which is his declaration of who he is—their long-awaited Messiah, a fulfillment of the words of Zechariah, the prophet: ‘Rejoice greatly…your king comes to you…humble and riding on a donkey, on a colt, the foal of a donkey.’ Pretty specific, wouldn’t you say? It was the tradition of the east—the king that came into the city riding on a horse was intent on war, whereas the king who came riding upon a donkey was coming in peace—Jesus came as our Prince of Peace. The celebrants wave the palm branches, sing praises and shout “Hosanna!” O, anxious friend, one of the best ways you can battle your anxiety, get the best of your worry is to sing ‘Hosanna’ yourself. Singing praises elevates who God is, beats back your lying fears and damning anxieties; besides all that, ‘Hosanna’ means ‘save now’ . . .