Imagine being a first-century Jew who traveled to Jerusalem for the annual Passover. You have made this journey dozens of times, but this time it just feels different. For hundreds of years the words of the prophet Zechariah have not been fulfilled: “Behold, your king is coming to you; righteous and having salvation is he…” (Zechariah 9:9a). After the nation has waited hundreds of years, you finally see the one Zechariah anticipated, you see Jesus of Nazareth “humble and mounted on a donkey, on a colt, the foal of a donkey” (Zech. 9:9b). He’s here! Messiah! You want to honor the king but all you have is a song, a palm branch, or your outer garment. Because He is worthy, you use what you have to worship your Messiah saying, Hosanna! “Blessed is the King who comes in the name of the Lord!” (Luke 19:40)

Whether it’s first century Israel or 21st century North San Diego County, God is looking for the same excitement from people in worshiping the Messiah. In John 4:23 we see Jesus say to the woman “(t)he Father is looking for those who will worship Him that way”. He is looking for people who are willing to humble themselves and approach Him with an honest heart. The location of the worship doesn’t matter; the status of the worshiper doesn’t matter, but a right heart attitude is required. In his letter to the Romans, Paul would put it this way, “present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God, which is your spiritual worship” (12:1).

The Father is searching for worshipers who have the right heart. Will you join with others in the church in worshipping today whatever you may be doing? Hiking, chores, work, and school are all places where we can present our worship to God. Going back to first-century Israel, the Pharisees were among the crowd of people and were close enough to tell Jesus that he should tell the people to stop praising Him. Jesus responded by saying, “I tell you, if these were silent, the very stones would cry out” (Luke 19:41). The Father will find worshipers, the only question that remains is whether it will be the rocks crying out, or us, presenting our palm branches and garments, or perhaps a song and scrubbing dishes.

Greg Hill

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