The world stopped on that Wednesday, 29 July 1981. BBC estimated an a global TV audience of 750 million. Two million people lined up on the streets to watch the procession from the Royal residence. Everybody wanted to follow closely the “fairy tale wedding” story of Lady Diane and Prince Charles.
People seem very interested in royal matters these days. Even more recently the wedding of Prince Williams and Catherine Middleton drew even more interest. People in general seem very interested in the easiest and shortest path from “pageant/slave to heir or son.
In Jesus time, there was also a great royal expectation around Israel. People expected of a royal figure to liberate Israel of Roman domination. They called this figure the Messiah. The Jews hoped this Messiah would turned its people from slaves to Romes to heirs of God’s kingdom. Some around Jesus recognized him as the Messiah (Mar 5:6-7), but Jesus was a diferent Messiah. No swords, no insurrection, no war. Jesus was a different Messiah who sought to overthrown Rome differently (Jo 18:19-11). Jesus road to messiaship required blood, tears and rejection.
Similarly, the only way we might inherit God’s kingdom is to become heirs with Jesus by sharing in his sufferings (Gal 3:29). The disciples sought their inheritance on a successful moment of Jesus ministry, just to abandon him days later at the cross.
Before we rush to judge the disciples, let’s be honest… don’t we do the same? Don’t we all seek to create kingdoms for ourselves instead of severing God and neighbor first?
And in the process, we worship and serve ourselves. The byproduct of that is often destroy relationships, run over people, lost friendships. The only antidote for self-centeredness is to refocus on lives around the lamb of God. We need a 180 degrees course correction. The only solution is to partake in Jesus glory by sharing in his suffering (1Pe 4:13). We need to follow the example of Simon of Cyrene and carry our own Cross and follow Jesus (May 27:32).
At the end of the day, there is always a decision. Martin Luther King Jr said it best:
Every man must decide whether he will walk in the light of creative altruism or in the darkness of destructive selfishness. (Martin Luther king jr)
We neee more creative altruism. We need less destructive selfishness. The day we learn the difference and put it into practice, that’s the day real life begin.