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Monday, April 2, 2007

A foggy spring morning
Today we had a foggy spring morning.
At the time I took this photo the fog has practically all burned off.

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"When We Will Hold Palm Branches"

"After this I looked and there before me was a great multitude that no one could count, from every nation, tribe, people and language, standing before the throne and in front of the Lamb. They were wearing white robes and were holding palm branches in their hands. And they cried out in a loud voice: 'Salvation belongs to our God, who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb'" (Revelation 7:9,10).
I look forward to the special days on the church calendar such as Palm Sunday, the introduction to Holy Week.  Yesterday my heart was full of gratitude as I gathered with others who place their faith in Jesus Christ.  On Palm Sunday we consider the significance of the day that Jesus entered Jerusalem.  As He entered the city He was greeted by a crowd who laid their cloaks before Him, waved palm branches, and joyfully shouted praises to the Messiah.  "Hosanna!  Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord."

Christ's triumphal entry was a fulfillment of prophecy spoken of in Zechariah 9:9, "See, your king comes to you, righteous and having salvation, gentle and riding on a donkey, on a colt, the foal of a donkey."

Palms are a symbol of triumph and victory. If we ourselves were on that parade route what would we have said or done?  How deeply would our convictions have been?  Would we have exuberantly welcomed Christ's entry on Palm Sunday and only days later yielded to political and peer pressure to jeer with the crowd who cried out over and over, "Crucify Him, crucify Him"? 

Scripture gives us a glimpse of another future scene described in Revelation. The redeemed through all the ages will gather and comprise a great multitude that no one can count.  I sure plan to be one in the multitude of the redeemed! We'll be joined together from every nation, tribe, people and language.

What an incredible experience it will be!  We'll stand before the throne and in front of the Lamb dressed in spotless robes of white. No tailored suits, "power" ties, designer dresses or peasant's rags.  There will be none of the class pretenses that seem to matter so much on this side. 

And notice especially that we'll be holding palm branches just like they did at the Triumphal Entry as we rejoice in the ultimate victory!

On the first Palm Sunday the crowds cried out "Hosanna", which means "Save us."  In heaven we will cry out with a loud voice, "Salvation belongs to our God, who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb." 

Have you made that declaration from your heart?  Are you living according to that declaration today and every day? 

Be encouraged today,

Stephen & Brooksyne Weber

Daily Prayer: Father, every year as we enter into Holy Week, we consider each major event that ultimately led Your Son to the cross of Calvary.  May our minds and hearts be led to Calvary as we contemplate the suffering, agony and betrayal Christ endured on our behalf.  We are eternally grateful that we will someday stand before the throne of God, not because of our own goodness or achievements, but solely because of the finished redemptive work of Christ our Savior.  Hosanna!

Brooksyne's Note: Our family visited a church yesterday where a friend of Stephen's extended a special invitation since he was sharing the Palm Sunday message. Following the service we were invited to dinner by a host family in the church who had prepared a large country feast for several visiting ministers and their large families.  It added up to 33 guests and yet there was  food leftover!

Following the meal the ladies cleared the main table that seated 22 guests and then visited together. The men toured the large dairy farm and visited into the mid-afternoon. 

Stephen and I were curious as to how you could seat 22 guests comfortably at one table.  Upon inquiring we learned that a local furniture maker custom makes these tables for people who request them.  I'm sure that he does quite a lot of business since the Amish and Mennonites normally have large families and would especially need an "Extended Table", as they are called.  The table yesterday had at least ten table leafs.  (Stephen forgot to take his camera or we would probably have a photo!)

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Scripture references are from The Holy Bible: New International Version. © 1984 by International Bible Society; NEW AMERICAN STANDARD BIBLE®, Copyright © 1995 by The Lockman Foundation. Used by permission; and the King James Version.
Personal Mission Statement: "I am created by God to bring Him glory. Through God's Son Jesus Christ I have been redeemed and I make it my life's goal to please the Lord. My mission in life is to honor God through my faith and obedience and to prepare myself and all whom I may influence for eternity."

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