When they had come near Jerusalem and had reached Bethphage, at the Mount of Olives, Jesus sent two disciples, 2saying to them, “Go into the village ahead of you, and immediately you will find a donkey tied, and a colt with her; untie them and bring them to me.
3If anyone says anything to you, just say this,
‘The Lord needs them.’
And he will send them immediately.”
4This took place to fulfill what had been spoken through the prophet, saying, 5“Tell the daughter of Zion, Look, your king is coming to you, humble, and mounted on a donkey, and on a colt, the foal of a donkey.”
6The disciples went and did as Jesus had directed them; 7they brought the donkey and the colt, and put their cloaks on them, and he sat on them. 8A very large crowd spread their cloaks on the road, and others cut branches from the trees and spread them on the road. 9The crowds that went ahead of him and that followed were shouting,
“Hosanna to the Son of David! Blessed is the one who comes in the name of the Lord! Hosanna in the highest heaven!”
10When he entered Jerusalem, the whole city was in turmoil, asking, “Who is this?”
11The crowds were saying, “This is the prophet Jesus from Nazareth in Galilee.”
- Matthew 21:1-11
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These dreams of Jesus.
The ones he kept telling everyone about:
The Reign of God is near.
The last shall be first.
The captives will be set free!
These dreams of Jesus, Jesus’ dreams—at first, when he started telling everybody about them, they sounded pretty absurd.
They were easy to dismiss.
Everyone thought they’d dissipate like all those other dreams,
like the dreams from last night,
the ones we’ve already forgotten.
Everyone thought they’s just float up into the atmosphere
And then Jesus fed 5,000 people.
And the Jesus talked back to Herod. And to the priests.
And then he healed a woman who was hurt very badly.
And then he even went and he raised someone from the dead.
He did all of these things.
And all the while, Jesus kept on, talking about his dreams.
Everywhere he went.
To everyone he healed.
And with everyone he fed!
They just wouldn’t go away!
These dreams of Jesus…
Blessed are the poor, the hungry will be fed,
Thy kindom come. Thy will be done.
At hand… On earth…
hallowed be thy name…
These dreams these dreams, Jesus’ dreams—they transfigured.
When Jesus spoke over these, when he shared them over meals with sinners and tax collectors, pharisees and sex workers and fishermen:
The dreams, when Jesus shared them, they also became prayers.
Jesus’ dreams became their dreams too.
They became The Prayers of the People.
The People began to pray.
They prayed for a better world.
They prayed from deep down within.
From places they had forgotten.
And as the people prayed, it turns out,
when the people prayed together,
they found that,
when they said their prayers out loud,
not only did they feel a little better,
but, also, they learned something:
It turned out, that after all of those years of silence…
all of those years saying nothing, keeping small talk, floating gossip…
after all those years of silence…
it turned out that when they said it out loud,
they all kind-of sort-of wanted the same thing.
And all those years they were afraid to say it!
This world is not my home.
I really hope there is a better place, somehow, somewhere…
I hope suffering ends. I am afraid of what will come.
All those years they were silent…
afraid to be labeled ungrateful. Or worse.
They buried their hopes and their pains.
But now Jesus dreamed, and so they dreamed, too.
And their dreams became beautiful prayers!
And they became transfigured.
They became Resurrected, alive, even hopeful.
And, then, some people tried to kill Jesus.
In Rome, explained the guards and politicians, dreaming is not allowed. And we only pray for the king—not for another kingdom!!! Certainly not for another kingdom!
We’re sorry, disciples, but we need to kill your leader.
He dreams too much.
And too loudly.
You understand, they explained.
Sleep is much better than dreams, anyhow. It’s more Realistic.
Don’t you like reality?
Show us which one he is.
We’ll give you gold. We’ll make sure you’re not charged.
You’ll be scott free, they said.
And so they tried to dissuade the crowds and the disciples.
And they conspired against Jesus because of his dreams.
And they kept planning to kill him.
Now, Jesus’ dreams were important. His dreams were prayers. And his prayers Resurrected people. They made people come to life! Rise from the tomb, from the stench!
And Resurrection is certainly worth fighting for.
So Jesus sent for a donkey and for a colt.
And Jesus, like those who dreamt of God’s Reign before him,
of God’s Banquet,
of the Lion laying down with the lamb…
Jesus and the donkeys
began to march.
A March on Jerusalem!
The "city of peace".
And there was peace in Jerusalem, of course.
They called in the Pax Romana.
This meant that there was security everywhere.
Law and Order! Pax Romana!
Lots of swords, guns, spears.
So there was peace,
But there was no justice.
Because, you see, daily bread was still a dream,
still a prayer,
still the feast that is yet to come.
Give us this day our daily bread.
Hosanna. God save.
So Jesus and the donkeys and the people marched.
And as they began to march,
so did others.
More neighbors. More tax collectors. More sinners! More misfits and outlaws and outcasts. More poor and peacemakers and people who weep. And suffer.
It seemed that all the city gathered around!
All those Jesus called blessed.
They, too wanted to say shout their prayers, their dreams.
Jesus’ march became a procession.
And the procession became a parade.
And the parade became a heck of a party—with lots of Palms!
And everyone there dreamed out loud!
Shouting to the highest heavens:
Hosanna! They said.
God save us!
Thy kindom come on earth as it is in in heaven.
God save us! Hosanna!
And they turned over the tables that had been crushing them with guilt and with debt.
And they imagined. And they prayed. And they imagined.
Perhaps the Reign of God really is at hand.
Perhaps it is near by.
And they wondered:
What would Paradise look like?
What is heaven on earth?
What is Resurrection? For me? For my friends?
I hope it comes soon, they prayed.
Hosanna in the highest.
And the authorities, again, conspired against him.
Of what do you dream?