What do your palms look like now? They were green, fresh and supple when we waved them on Palm Sunday. We go through Holy Week and the triumph of Easter. Now we look at our palms and they are dry, yellow and brittle. I tend to stick mine behind a picture in my dining room and largely forget about them. As a matter of fact, I have 2 or 3 years worth back there now. I look at them and think – I really should stick them in the fireplace and burn them. But then I don’t.
It’s hard to look at the dry, yellow and brittle when we are in the joy of the Easter season. The disciples are literally on fire with Spirit humming in their veins. They are healing people left and right. This Sunday, we will hear people believe they only need Peter’s shadow to pass over them to heal. This is the good news at long last!
But where were they on Good Friday? They waved their palms a couple weeks ago and they have spiritual fervor now when healing and joy is in the air. But when things got tough, nothing. Zilch. Na-da. Well, at least for many of them.
The palms go stale when they are cut off from their life source. Their roots are no longer nourished by soil and water. Their leaves don’t process the light of the sun anymore. They are lifeless.
Maybe keeping the palms behind the picture is a reminder. When we cut off from our life source, we go stale too. It is easy to be with God and follow God when things are good. But when times are hard, that is when we must still stretch out our roots towards the living water. We must raise our gaze to the sun (son). We must hang on and hang in. Be nourished. Maybe instead of turning dry and brittle, we will stay fresh and supple in the light of God’s mercy and grace.