Comes A Horseman...

Why are you doing this?

That's what the men asked as we untied the colt.

The Lord needs it, I said. That's what Jesus had instructed us to say. The men seemed to know this even before our answer. It was as if the moment had been prepared beforehand.

Why are you doing this?

That's what I wanted to ask him as he sat the colt. I'd never seen Jesus ride any kind of animal, much less an unbroken colt. He always walked, everywhere, always. And we followed. But I didn't ask why. Days of questioning seemed to be over; the hour was growing late. As we threw our coats as a makeshift saddle, I remembered.

Bartimeus stood up and threw off his coat. The garment didn't fall from his shoulders or slide down his arms. No, the blind man wrested himself from it and ran toward the Lord's voice. And then the Lord's question.

Why are you doing this?

Timeus' son said Rabboni, to see.

I'd never seen a blind man dance before. He looked like some unbroken colt, heaving himself in bucks of joy. Jesus simply smiled and started walking toward Jerusalem. And we followed.

We had been the ones dispatched to retrieve the colt. Now, the two of us walked shoulder to shoulder behind the procession. He, the one who would betray, whispered into an air filled with hosannas: Why, why are you doing this?

I paused a moment while he continued to walk. His rearranged his coat and looked back into my eyes. The brokenness I saw scared me. I saw that same expression in the garden. The blessed palm branches then replaced by fire and sticks and stones. I wondered aloud: Why are you doing this?

His answer that night blinded me: The Lords needs it. And then we, the eleven, scattered, wondering why?

[I have no idea whether or not Judas was one of the two in this scene, but for some reason, I see him and John as "the two" - the beloved and the betrayer, each feeling the weight of the other's words and actions]


  1. John-
    The disciples getting the colt for Jesus often puzzles I too wonder "Why is he doing this?" And then to subject himself to being praised with hosannas when he knows rejection is coming so very soon brings even more questions to mind.

    Though you don't know me, your words often resonated with both my husband and me at IAC. Needless to say, I was delighted to find them again on Dirty Shame through my friend Erica's blog.

    I appreciate your suggestion of Crossing to Safety; I'll certainly browse the shelves for it.

    May the peace of Christ be always with you.

    Elly (Utsukushii)

  2. His passion is incomprehensible to me, John. Almost too hard to believe.

  3. As I go through my busy days...when life seems so unfair, thanks for reminding me of what is really important.

    How blessed are we?! We have a Savior that truly loves us! Dirt and all!!!

    I loved your story!