Palm Sunday: Share the News!

Hello Friends,

How are you doing today? For those that were able to attend this year’s “Lock-In,” did you have a good time? Did you enjoy going bowling and going on a scavenger hunt and playing games and watching movies and searching for Easter Eggs? I know I had a good time! But let me tell you, I was certainly tired after everything was done….I was definitely ready for a nap. Even though the “Lock-In” was a good day, and to some of you a very important day, I want to share with you about another good and important day. And this day involves palm branches, Jesus riding on a donkey, and sharing the news.

How many of you keep up with the news every day? Do any of you watch the local news or find a newspaper and read it or listen to the news on some sort of device or on a radio? Do your parents watch the news at night? Do they watch CNN or Fox News? Whose mom and dad get their news on the Internet through their phone or tablet? How many of you have parents who never, ever watch the news? (With everything going on in the world, maybe not watching the news is not that bad of an idea…)

However, the news is important. It keeps us informed about important things happening in our community, our state, our country, and our world. The news lets us know what our leaders are doing, what they are thinking, and what they are calling us to do. The news lets us know when we don’t have school because of the snow or cold temperatures. It lets us know about important changes in the weather. It keeps us informed about things happening right where we live. Sometimes we even see people we know on the news being interviewed. The news is really important, even if we don’t understand all of it. (I typically have the news playing in the office while I do work.) 

The news can tell us fun things. Entertainment news lets us know what cool movies are being made and who will be in them. Sports news keeps us up to date about scores, trades, and everything we need to know about our favorite team. I’m guessing a few of you sports lovers are already following your teams daily, aren’t you, especially during the March Madness season? On the other hand, most of the time, the news is pretty gloomy. The stories that make the top of the news always seem to be bad stories. There’s a fire downtown. A business is closing. An accident took place. People were injured. Wars, travel accidents, scandals. As important as it is to stay informed, these are the things that make us want to turn the news off! 

News is everywhere today, thanks to tablets, smartphones, the Internet and Wi-Fi. You don’t have to wait for the morning paper or even the evening news to know what’s going on. You can bring it up right on your phone. But in Jesus’ day, news traveled only by word of mouth. When something happened in one town, it could be weeks before people in the next town heard about it. That’s part of why today is so amazing!

Today is Palm Sunday. It’s the day Jesus arrived in Jerusalem, preparing to give his life for us. The people of Jerusalem had no idea Jesus was about to die. They were excited he had come. They wanted to see him, to praise him, and to welcome him. One person at a time, word spread around town. This is what greeted Jesus on Palm Sunday. Jesus did everything he could to keep his arrival a secret. He arranged for the donkey without telling anyone, not even his disciples, until it was necessary. But by the time Jesus arrived, a crowd of people had already gathered. They sang his praises and waved palm branches, welcoming the one who came to save them. 

No one knew why Jesus had come, except for Jesus himself who that his message needed to be heard in Jerusalem. No one knew the secret mission that was about to unfold. Jesus would be arrested, tried, and put to death. The same people shouting, “Hosanna!” would later shout, “Crucify him!” It was all part of God’s plan to save us from sin and give us new life. Word of mouth news let everyone in Jerusalem know Jesus had arrived on Palm Sunday. This week we want you to spread the news of Jesus’ resurrection – the story we celebrate next week. 

The Easter story probably won’t be told on the news this week. That’s mostly because it’s not news. Yes, next Sunday is Easter, but the historic moment we celebrate on Easter is now two thousand years in the past. If we want the world – and by the world, I mean our friends – to know what Jesus did on Easter, it’s up to us to share that news the old fashioned way by telling them in person like Jesus did when he entered Jerusalem for the first and last time. We all have friends who do not go to church. We all know someone who needs to hear about Jesus’ plan of salvation. That’s why Jesus commanded us in Matthew 28 to go into all the world and share the good news. God doesn’t want us to wait for a news story to tell our friends about God; it’s not going to happen. He wants us to do the talking. 

This week, I want all of you to pray for your friends. Start talking to them tomorrow, and let them know Sunday is Easter Sunday. With your parents’ okay, invite a friend or two to come to church next week. Let them know about the fun things we’ll do. Let them know about the music and games and all the excitement. But don’t forget the most important thing. Let them know what we celebrate on Easter. 

On Palm Sunday we celebrate Jesus’ coming, we have received great news. We celebrate the amazing way he gave himself up to save us. Let’s pack this place next Sunday. Let’s bring our friends to hear the end of the Jesus story. Let’s start with our friends in telling the world that Jesus came to save them!

“Read All About It”: Jesus Enters Jerusalem on a Donkey and Has a Message to Tell Us. Grab your palm branches and wave them as he passes by. Then go tell your friends that Jesus has arrived to save them! Share the good news today and every day!

Your Friend, Holy Spirit!

Children’s Message inspired by the following website


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