What is widely considered the most important Christian holiday is right around the corner. Have you considered how the celebration of Easter might actually change your life, if you let it?
Our always materialistic and commercialized society focuses on fluffy bunnies hippity hopping along with their baskets of speckled eggs and chocolate likenesses, and honestly, that’s okay. Easter ushers in spring and gives families an opportunity to have some fun with their kids, something I am never opposed to. I have fond memories of hiding Easter baskets and freshly dyed eggs, always looking for more strategic spots as the kids grew older and wiser. The giant chocolate bunny was always the hit of the day, with the ubiquitous question of what to bite off first – the ears or the tail (duh – the EARS!)
But my memories of family Easters also go to our church pictures. I have one for pretty much every year. There go the four of us, dressed in pastels, our small son in a baby blue tie, our daughter in a floral dress with a ribbon in her blond hair. Afterward, we would almost always go to brunch, and it wouldn’t be long before that tie and dress showed telltale signs of mac & cheese, followed by chocolate.
Family traditions are the lifeblood of togetherness, of cherished memories you hope will be passed on to future generations. So when you realize this, how do you factor in the most important part of Easter – the celebration of Jesus’ resurrection, his defeat of death, and his ultimate sacrifice so that one day we would find out exactly how glorious eternity with the Father is.
Many of us haven’t been to “live” church since the pandemic began. We’ve watched faithfully from home each Sunday and had great discussions about the sermons. We sing along with the praise music and snuggle with our dog and sip coffee, and honestly, it’s been kind of special. But this Sunday, we will put on our Easter finery and head back to church. We’ve been waiting for this special day to make our return, and it really does feel like a rebirth.
Rebirth back into society, rebirth into some sense of normalcy, rebirth into a new season that, despite the pollen, promises to bring new greenery and new flowers to our currently dismal landscape.
But rebirth, also, to our souls. To our emotional growth. To our hope. Jesus and his resurrection embody hope at a time when we’ve never needed it more. The crazy thing is that over 2,000 years ago – in fact, well before then, as the prophecies tell us – God knew we would need this reminder in 2021. He knew we would be desperate for hope.
I don’t think the timing of Easter is a mistake. I think it is a predestined reminder that no matter how bad things may seem, God is always good. He’s always there. And nothing will ever defeat Him!