They welcomed the King into the city. She kept in mind the sacrifice he made. They must be made to remember it. She had been on the battlefield only a week ago, ready to fight. There was a period of time when certain feelings had built up in her. Those feelings separated her from him. While they were still on the battlefield, the girl ran to him and the king forgave her. She wondered at how she could separate herself from him when he loved her so dearly. And yet, she did. She could hear the enemy’s words, “you must despair. You have failed.” Even when the girl hear the enemy’s cries, her King whispered to her, “stay strong. Yes, you have hurt those I love, but I forgive you. I love you. That will never change. You are with me now.” Her heart still felt broken. She felt the same as before, “you are not the same. You are whole again and we are made new. Those things are gone. You have only today.”
O the battlefield! The girl assumed she would be there at least to see the heat of the battle, but something greater was about to take place. While the war raged on, the King pulled away with his soldiers and took her to his side. “Walk beside me,” he said. She obeyed. They glorified him, loved him, and as they walked through the city, he riding a colt and she on foot. The crowds worshiped him. Something did not feel right though. In his eyes, she could see his agony. The girl knew what would happen. They would betray him. But she walked beside him. She would stay with him.
Where was the battlefield now? It was not in sight. All she would see were the crowded streets, the noise, and her king beside her. She stayed with him and they walked. They were silent.
It had happened before, all of this. Pulled out of battle. This was so strange and hard to understand. The king must pull back. He must be weak. And in his weakness, he would be defeated and be victorious.
“I said I would fight,” she told him before they left the field.
“I know. This is the battle you could not fight. I must carry it. Do not fear, it will not be long and then we can return.”
It was no longer a time of romance and exchanges of sweet love. She had to stand by as the king paid the price of a criminal. Imagine so great, so loving a King, disguised and dying as a poor man because of his love. What cut her even more was as she thought of her sins and his forgiveness. He carried out what sin deserved and she received forgiveness and a new heart. Before they set out, he looked at the cross in her arms, took it in his own and they walked. She could still feel, as they made their way, how it felt in the moment when it was lifted from her arms. Now she had to watch.
It was only once a year, but it was a week that lasted forever. God did lay upon him the sins of us all.