Do you remember when you cry? Tears are often a weakness for us, something to be hidden, a source of incredible discomfort when we are around someone who’s crying. We don’t know what to do when someone cries, so we often try and comfort them, in the hopes they will stop. Emotions are messy, our life is messy. So do you remember when you cry? Tears are important, they are human, they are real, and especially today they speak a language deeper than what words can convey. Tears are the language of love, language that collects us into something bigger than who we are individually. So do you remember when you cry? Our scriptures remember when Jesus cries, it only happened three times- and today is one of those times. Details matter in the gospel, so to hear Jesus crying is not a mistake, because none of this is a mistake.
Sandwiched between our two gospels this morning is a moment rarely focused on because of how much there is to see and hear today in the last days of Christ’s life, and action sell’s where emotions don’t. In it, Christ see’s Jerusalem for the first time and cries. He is surrounded by the festivity of all the chaos and jubilation of his arrival as King into a city where he knows he will die, because he is the messiah and prophecy told him and us that this was going to happen. Among the shouts of Hosanna are the same voices who will shout Crucify Him. The robes he wears will be used to mock him. The jubilation will turn to fear. The excitement to hate. And Jesus cries over it. But why? Because for Jesus, Jerusalem is a representation of you and I, a foretaste of the kingdom family, and you and I are about to kill him because of how terrifying and personal this kingdom all becomes. It would be unhelpful to see his tears as pitty, or fear for himself. Rather his tears are for us, a sign of his incredible love. This has to happen, and in that is the deeply personal nature of what is going on today. Our role in it, our fear of it, our hate, or unrest, or resistence, our scarcity, our humanity.
I think alot about the times that bring me to tears, the funerals and burials we do here in this place. That piece of music that brings me back to a moment I can’t experience anymore because they are gone. Singing that hymn they loved on a sunday morning, but their voice is now gone. The face of hate that tells people of difference that they don't belong, or fear that brings violence in order to feel like we still have a place in society. The incredible need on our streets. The strain and burden of our students and faculty to produce and deliver. The lack of conversations about mental health which are not shameful . All of these are about re-membering a feeling which brings back all the other memories associate with that feeling. The fear, the loss, the pain, the suffering, the isolation. Yet in this re-membering of Christ this morning its less about an emotional state and more about a family state- specifically a family of the kingdom of God. A kingdom where death is no more, where fear, and pain, and hate have no place. Where we are made whole and walk in peace together. This re-membering is more than just talking about yesterday, its about putting ourselves back together. Something which starts for us today.
For this day, or this week, to make any sense- for Easter to make any sense, then the hosannas must come with crucify him, because it's not a week for us- a theory to be mentally understood, it's a week about us- a week to be lived. You see, this week, this day, is the Eucharistic Mystery of our daily conversions- daily turnings- within ourselves from the life of fear into the life of love which is Christ, made real and present in the most unavoidable way possible. This week, this day, points us directly into the cross we have been facing all year, but can no longer avoid, and re-members like a surgeon puts back together a broken body- puts us back together- into the community of the Cross. To bring peace where there is war, to end hate and phobia, to stand up to the centres of power and speak truth in love. Which starts with tears. These sacred tears are our invitation into the perpetual reconciliation and re-membering- or putting back together and re gathering of you and I into the community of the cross. This is why Jesus, at the last supper says to re-member him. He didn't mean, take a loaf of bread and glass of wine and think about him. He meant, take my flesh and my blood, the very source of love, and know that you are part of me forever. You are a member of my house forever. I am as close to you as your breath, your skin, your hair. Nothing can ever separate us, not even your vain shouts of Hosanna, or the fear of your Crucify. Your doubt, or your hate, your betrayal, or selfishness. Nothing can ever take remove our membership from the community of the cross. Nothing. And the tears of Christ re-membering us into community as he looks at the chaos that is jerusalem, the Chaos we experience today, is our passport to the human week before us.
Come and walk this sacred week. Come and wrestle with this incredible love. Come and feel the tears, the bread, the wood, the tomb, the betrayal, and the nails, that re-member us into the sacred family and life of the cross in the world we serve. The only way to tell you about this week is through tears, those non-verbal words of the soul, which speak in love for us. Come, experience the weirdest week of your life, and be re-membered into the heart beat of love which is the community of the cross.