And when he had said these things, he went on ahead, going up to Jerusalem. When he drew near to Bethphage and Bethany, at the mount that is called Olivet, he sent two of the disciples, saying, “Go into the village in front of you, where on entering you will find a colt tied, on which no one has ever yet sat. Untie it and bring it here. If anyone asks you, ‘Why are you untying it?’ you shall say this: ‘The Lord has need of it.’” So those who were sent went away and found it just as he had told them. And as they were untying the colt, its owners said to them, “Why are you untying the colt?” And they said, “The Lord has need of it.” And they brought it to Jesus, and throwing their cloaks on the colt, they set Jesus on it. And as he rode along, they spread their cloaks on the road. As he was drawing near—already on the way down the Mount of Olives—the whole multitude of his disciples began to rejoice and praise God with a loud voice for all the mighty works that they had seen, saying, “Blessed is the King who comes in the name of the Lord! Peace in heaven and glory in the highest!” And some of the Pharisees in the crowd said to him, “Teacher, rebuke your disciples.” He answered, “I tell you, if these were silent, the very stones would cry out.” Luke 19:28-40
An aspect of growing up Native is the understanding that all the created world is animated and full of life. We are related to all creation, and although radically different in form, we too are part of that living creation, related as a family, and therefore obligated to the rest of creation. Our ancient Cherokee stories tell us that other animals and all life had language and we all conversed until humans damaged those relations and we lost our capacity to understand.
Jesus makes is about to make his triumphal entry into Jerusalem. His disciples and followers bubble over with joy and excitement and begin to cheer. The religious leaders try to silence them, embraced perhaps, by their lack of dignity. But God does move in all creation and in that moment there was joy flooding over all of the created order. The final act of God's story of love was about to begin. If the disciples didn't cry out, then the stones would. The joy of the Creator's willingness to offer one precious child for the ransom of the whole world was not lost on creation. And it shouldn't be lost on us. As we begin Advent, we are invited to remember where all this is leading - from creche to cross and resurrection - God loving and desiring us so much that a child is brought for the sake of the whole world.
Today, I ask God to help me rekindle joy and thanksgiving in this busy season. It is too easy for us all to get wrapped up in the tasks, too easy for us to whine about all there is to do. Yet in the midst of all this preparation and work, there is the joy that the rocks and the trees know, and that we know, if we would but let it in. God is with us, and God is always moving for us all of of creation. May we raise our voices in love and joy, so that all of creation might sing in response to Emmanuel, God with us.