John 12, verses 12 to 15, describe this scene: “The next day the huge crowd that had arrived for the feast heard that Jesus was entering Jerusalem. They broke off palm branches and went out to meet him. And they cheered: ‘Hosanna! Blessed is he who comes in God’s name! Yes! The King of Israel!’”
Jesus got on a young donkey and rode it, just as the Scripture has it: “No fear, daughter Zion: See how your king comes, riding on a donkey’s colt.”
One evening some years ago, I arrived to visit some friends just in time to see Christmas decorations going up in front of their home. Little Eddie (about 4 years old) was SO excited to help his dad set everything up in their front yard!
As I got out of my car, Eddie came out of the garage with a bundle in his arms and a glow on his face.
“I get to carry Jesus!” he yelled as only an excited 4-year-old can.
I said, “Wow! How cool is that?” as he proudly carried his snugly wrapped Jesus figure to the manger scene under the oak tree in the front yard.
As it began to get dark, we all settled around the dinner table to enjoy a delicious meal. Eddie, usually the first one at the dinner table, kept glancing worriedly out the big living room windows.
His mom noticed and asked him, “What’s wrong, Eddie?”
“Momma, it’s snowing.” Mom was confused. Eddie loved snow! It was one of his favorite things in the world.
Eddie got down from his dinner table chair and began to put his coat back on. Now all of us were confused. Where was he going? Then, Eddie put his hat and mittens on.
“Son, where are you going?” Dad asked as he, too, got up, prepared to go with his young son on whatever expedition he was planning.
“Dad, it’s snowing! Baby Jesus is out in the snow. I gotta go get him. He’s the most important thing, and I left Him out there. That means I gotta take care of Him, and I’m not gonna let Jesus freeze!”
Out he went, Dad quickly donning his coat to follow. We watched out the windows as Eddie carefully took Jesus out of the manger and brought Him into the house. As father and son came in the front door, Eddie’s dad had a twinkle in his eye and a smile on his face. “Son, tell them what you just told me. I’m so proud of you.”
Eddie stopped, hugging baby Jesus close, and he said, “I told Dad this is what we’re supposed to do. We’re supposed to let Jesus in, and we’re supposed to take care of Him. Isn’t that right?”
From the lips of a child — Eddie was right. We are called to “carry Christ” everywhere we go, into every company we keep and each situation we find ourselves in.
What if our overriding concern was the care and protection of the presence of Christ in our lives? What if we refused to let His presence in our lives get “frozen?”
We are supposed to welcome, preserve and expand the presence of Christ in our lives.
The crowds who gathered to welcome Jesus as He rode into Jerusalem had it right that day. They grabbed branches to wave in welcome. Some even placed their coats (probably the only one they possessed) on the path for the donkey to walk on, to make the pathway softer, cleaner and more welcoming.
How can people today be “Christ-carriers?” As you think of specific examples, picture the places you go each week — perhaps work, school, shopping, your home. How does Christ enter these places with you?