Here is “The Risen Christ by the Sea,” Jack Jewell’s painting of a joyful, triumphant Risen Christ surprising his disciples at the Sea of Tiberias. Jewell, a seascape artist, painted it at the suggestion of a New York Fire Department chaplain who was the successor of the FDNY chaplain who was killed in the 9/11 attack on the World Trade Center.
This print is available through the folks who publish The Joyful Noiseletter, which is a bi-monthly newsletter promoting the joy and wholeness of being a follower of Jesus. I have this print in my bedroom, another print the same size in my office, a large poster-sized print hung high in my living room, and a small business-card sized print on one of my end tables next to my couch. I like this image.
I imagine that this was how Jesus looked as he rode the donkey into Jerusalem on that first Palm Sunday. (Actually, the term “Palm” Sunday is a bit of a misnomer in that only the Gospel of John mentions palm branches. Matthew and Mark say that people put down clothes and branches. Luke says that people put down their cloaks in front of Jesus.) But, whatever they waved or laid down as Jesus processed into Jerusalem, I think he embraced the joyful celebration.
You and I need to remember the JOY of our salvation as well. Jesus has not released us from our sins and our fears to live lives of gloom and doom. He has, as our communion liturgy says, freed us for joyful obedience.
Here’s a little joyful joke from The Joyful Noiseletter: Did you know that Moses was the first person to download data to a tablet from the cloud?
Smile! God loves you! And it never hurts to have friends in high places.