Praise God for the Son of David

(based on Matthew 20)

I guess I am about the same age as you. And like you I spend time playing with my friends, I do chores, I go to the temple with my family where I sit with my father. But I guess you go to school, so that is different. Ever since I was old enough I have been learning my father’s trade alongside him. It is hard work but if I hadn’t been working with him then I never would have seen Jesus.

I had heard the talk about him. That he had healed people, made them better. But also that he was stirring up trouble. The leaders in the temple were really cross. They didn’t like what he was saying about them. Jesus must be brave, or stupid, because everyone knows that you don’t go against the temple leaders…

Anyway, that day, the day I saw Jesus, my dad came to me and said we weren’t working. We were going into the city. He said that he had a feeling, like something was about to happen and he wanted to be there when it did. He said he didn’t want to miss the Messiah coming.

So we were there, when Jesus rode by on his donkey. I sat on my Dad’s shoulders and waved a palm branch. I heard my dad calling out.

“Praise God for the Son of David.”

Jesus looked quite big on the donkey, but he smiled and waved as he rode by. He saw me and waved and gave me the tiniest of winks so I would know that he had seen me. I waved my branch like crazy then. It was amazing. I felt full of fireworks that were about to go off.

My dad jumped me down and we followed the crowds towards the Temple. My dad said that Jesus was the Messiah, the one we had been waiting for. He was sure. He said it was a great day. And I thought of Jesus’ smile and agreed.

But in the Temple Jesus wasn’t smiling anymore. He was angry. Not the kind of angry that your mother is when you haven’t tidied something and she has asked you at least a hundred times! Jesus meant business. His anger was based on something that mattered. Something that couldn’t be overlooked. You had to stand up and do something. You could hear the sadness in his words. How much he wanted things to be different.

CRASH! – One table smashed onto the ground and coins ran across the floor in all directions.

“It should be a house of prayer!”

CRASH! – Another table went over

“You have made it a den of thieves.”

BANG! The chairs where men sit selling doves were pushed to the ground. The doves flapped in their cages.

I held my father’s hand tight wondering what would happen next. I thought the men who bought and sold things would get Jesus. But they looked at him and Jesus took one step towards them and they just fled.

My father turned to me and said it was well done. For too long the temple had seemed like the market place.

Jesus looked around at the chaos he had created and his face relaxed. You could see that with the men gone something has been righted. Then he beckoned over a man with crutches. Jesus placed his hand on him and he was made totally well. He walked and jumped and praised God.

Coins littered the floor but they were left lying while Jesus healed one person after another.

I felt the words in my tummy before I said them out loud. The same words I had heard shouted in the streets. I would like to say that I just shouted them out like I longed to. But they first came out in a whisper.

“Praise God for the Son of David.”

But that one whisper gave me courage. The words seemed more true than any other truth I had ever heard. The next time I said them, they came out louder.

“Praise God for the Son of David.”

Then louder still.

“Praise God for the Son of David.”

The leaders weren’t happy, but now other children had joined in the cry.

The fireworks in my chest were exploding into joy.

“Praise God for the Son of David.”

My father squeezed my shoulder, encouraging me on. Telling me not to be afraid. And I wasn’t. Like when Jesus he threw the men out of the Temple, I knew I was doing the right thing.

“Praise God”

“For Jesus”

“For the Son of David.”

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