After spending Monday night in Bethany, according to Matthew, Mark and Luke, Jesus returned to Jerusalem. He stopped along the side of the road by a fig tree for breakfast but found the tree to be fruitless. He cursed the fig tree in front of his disciples to teach them another lesson about prayer. Upon arrival in the city, the temple leadership confronted him for what he did the previous day. The commotion he caused in his rebuke and cleansing of the temple had not gone unnoticed. They questioned his authority and purpose while Jesus used the parables of the two sons, vineyard, and wedding banquet to teach the people. Later, Jesus will also thwart an attempt by the Pharisees to trap him in a question about paying taxes.

Confrontation is a part of life for everyone, but personal confrontation can be the most painful and difficult kind to absorb. Through Jesus’s example on this day, we learn several things. First, we need not fear confrontation, or try to avoid it. Instead, with God’s help, we should boldly face whatever confrontation comes our way. Second, we clearly see in his example that it is possible to take the high road even in the most savage of confrontations. Despite being harassed, embarrassed, and personally challenged in many ways, Jesus’s responses were always thoughtful, sincere, level headed, and productive.

Pray today that God will give you the wisdom to handle confrontation in your life like Jesus did in his. Ask God to show you past confrontations that were left unresolved. Maybe there is someone you recently had a confrontation with that you need to ask for or give forgiveness if you handled that confrontation wrong. Take action today, do what the Lord calls you to do.