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Palm Sunday - A Snapshot

Palm Sunday - A Snapshot

1. How many of you have a lot of pictures of your family?

A. Pretty popular now to have them on your phone.

2. Gone are the days of big cameras and multiple lenses.

3. Here’s the thing about snapshots – what you see isn’t always the way it is.

  • Family portrait

  • Here’s our family. This is what you see. But it wasn’t like that.

  • What you didn’t see – 5 kids running down the road. Rolling in leaves – running through the woods. The girls trying to round them up. Pauline laughing. Me sighing hard. Jeremy and Aaron talking. Or, Aaron talking – Jeremy listening. But what you see is a good picture of our family

4. Social Media – we put our best out there. Exotic places – amusement parks – mountain hikes – but we don’t show the pictures of the daily grind and stressful times or those not flattering to us.

  • We show pictures of the family at breakfast with pancakes and eggs and bacon and sausage and country ham and gravy and biscuits and muffins – and we’re all smiling and wearing matching pajamas.

  • What we don’t see is the other 364 days of the year when it’s Pop Tarts or Fruit Loops.

5. And that brings me to this wonderfully powerful text.

Matthew 21:1-11 NLT
As Jesus and the disciples approached Jerusalem, they came to the town of Bethphage on the Mount of Olives. Jesus sent two of them on ahead. “Go into the village over there,” he said. “As soon as you enter it, you will see a donkey tied there, with its colt beside it. Untie them and bring them to me. If anyone asks what you are doing, just say, ‘The Lord needs them,’ and he will immediately let you take them.” This took place to fulfill the prophecy that said, “Tell the people of Jerusalem, ‘Look, your King is coming to you. He is humble, riding on a donkey—riding on a donkey’s colt.’” The two disciples did as Jesus commanded. They brought the donkey and the colt to him and threw their garments over the colt, and he sat on it. Most of the crowd spread their garments on the road ahead of him, and others cut branches from the trees and spread them on the road. Jesus was in the center of the procession, and the people all around him were shouting, “Praise God for the Son of David! Blessings on the one who comes in the name of the Lord! Praise God in highest heaven!” 10 The entire city of Jerusalem was in an uproar as he entered. “Who is this?” they asked. 11 And the crowds replied, “It’s Jesus, the prophet from Nazareth in Galilee.”

1. To just pick up the Bible and happen to turn here, you’d think that following Jesus would always be a hillside of praise and rejoicing and palm branches and hosannas.

  • When only few hours later there’s agony in the Garden – betrayal by a friend – beatings and a Crucifixion.

  • My point is, life is not a snapshot.

1. Thank God for the times we celebrate and we are all happy. Take in those moments. Breathe deep those moments. Be ever so grateful for those moments – for life isn’t always a hillside party.

2. Life isn’t the moment.

  • Life isn’t the moment for you nor me. So when those moments you spend that are off the mountain top – when you’re getting beat up by life and stress and living out your faith in a real world – remember, it’s only a snapshot – a moment, not your destiny.

    Your moment doesn’t define you. It’s just a scene in your life, not your story.

  • People step in and out of our lives – but they step into a scene, they don’t know the whole story.

  • The scene is not your story.

1. If you’d seen David loving on Bathsheba, you would assume he’s just a playboy using his kingship to get what he wanted. You’d surmise he’s just another adulterer.

  • But that was a scene – not the whole story! The story continued, “I have sinned against you, God, and you only. Wash me and forgive me and don’t take your Holy Spirit away from me.”

  • And God heard his prayer and we know his story – he’s the Sweet Singer of Israel and the man after God’s heart!

2. Joseph – prideful – pit – prisoner – Prime Minister.

Any given time you stepped in, you would have found a scene and not a pretty one. But God takes our scenes and writes His story.

3. Lazarus

4. Paul – Saul

5. Jesus – praise Him on Palm Sunday – beat Him to His very life on Thursday and nailed him to a cross on Friday.

All scenes. All moments. But the story was, it may be Friday but Sunday is coming.

  • It was Friday and the death sentence was rendered but that was Friday, Sunday is coming.
  • It’s Friday and some of the people who were praising on Sunday are part of the mob cursing on Friday. But it’s Friday, Sunday’s coming.
  • It’s Friday and the Savior of the world is hanging on a Cross – the devil is delighted as demons dance for glee.
  • But that’s because it’s Friday, Sunday’s coming.
  • So they took Him off the cross and laid Him on a cold tomb loaned by Joseph of Arimathea. The snapshot isn’t good. The Son of Man, who is the Son of God, lay dead and buried.
  • Ah, but on Sunday morning, the stone begins to move – angels descend – and Roman soldiers faint – because now it’s Sunday. The devil, who was thrilled, is now defeated and the demons tremble in fear.

Up from the grave He arose a mighty triumph over His foes. And now the story is written. All the snapshots make sense. The moment becomes our miracle.

  • And regardless of where you are today, it’s not over yet.

1. Your snapshot may be rejoicing and one of celebration. You may have never had it better. You’re on top of the world and your picture is worth putting on Facebook.

2. Or maybe you’re in the Garden living in betrayal. You know the pain of being used and abused.

3. Maybe your snapshot is one of tribulation. All that could go wrong has gone wrong and the weight of the world has fallen now on you.

You’re flogged by life’s harshest blows. Your crown has become a thorn – and your robe turned into stripes.

Hear me – it’s a scene! It’s not your story! It’s a moment, not your mission.

Sunday’s coming! Resurrection awaits! God has already written the final chapter and here’s the word for you and me:

We live happily ever after!

Worship Set

Savior's Here 

- Cody Cames and Kari Jobe

Verse 1

You bring hope You bring life
Awaken hearts open eyes
With our voices hear them rise
We call these dry bones to come alive
You are faithful You are true
We can always run to

Misc 1 (Pre-Chorus)

Love that never fails
Arms that never close
Blood that covers sin
Grace that never ends

Chorus 1

You have saved us You have won
Sin is broken death is gone
Freedom's found us breakthrough's near
In Your presence no more fear
(Our Savior's here our Savior's here)

Verse 2

Faith is stirring hearts are free
Chains are broken when we believe
You are mighty You come through
We can always run to

Misc 2 (Bridge)

Hallelujah hallelujah hallelujah
Our God saves
Hallelujah hallelujah hallelujah
Our God saves

Misc 3 (Interlude)


Misc 4 (Ending)

Oh You save us You save us You save us
Lord You save us You save us You save us
Yeah You free us You free us You free us
Oh You free us You free us You free us
Yeah You heal us You heal us You heal us
Yeah You heal us You heal us You heal us
You're our Savior our Savior our Savior our Savior
Yeah yeah
You open the blind eyes open the blind eyes
Heal our sickness
You alone You opened my blind eyes
Gave me a new life
Oh yeah our Savior's here

I Never Lost My Praise

- Kurt Carr

Chorus 1

I've lost some good friends along life's way
Some loved ones departed in Heaven to stay
But thank God I didn't lose everything
I've lost faith in people who said they cared
In the time of my crisis they were never there
But in my disappointment
In my season of pain
One thing never wavered
One thing never changed

I never lost my hope
I never lost my joy
I never lost my faith
Most of all I never lost my praise

My praise still here
My praise still here

I let some blessings slip away
And I lost my focus and went astray
But thank God I didn't lose everything
I lost possessions that were so dear
And I've lost some battles by walking in fear
But in the midst of my struggles
In my season of pain
One thing never wavered
One thing never changed

Praise praise praise
Most of all I never lost my praise
My praise still here
My praise still here

Here In Your Presence

- Jon Egan

Verse 1

Found in Your hands fullness of joy
Every fear suddenly wiped away
Here in Your Presence
All of my gains now fade away
Every crown no longer on display
Here in Your Presence

Misc 1 (Pre-Chorus)

Heaven is trembling in awe of Your wonders
The kings and their kingdoms are standing amazed

Chorus 1

Here in Your Presence
We are undone
Here in Your Presence
Heaven and earth become one
Here in Your Presence
All things are new
Here in Your Presence
Ev'rything bows before You

Misc 2 (Bridge)

Wonderful beautiful glorious
Matchless in ev'ry way