The azaleas are blooming bright white and magenta pink here in the south. Grass, prickly and green, shoots up making way for bare feet to graze. Our days are getting longer, warmer. Easter is almost here, reigning in the sweetness of spring.
Children enjoy baby chicks, coloring eggs in soft pastels, hunting. They wait for a bunny to bring them gifts of chocolate, a new dress, toys. They learn about Jesus and a cross; how he died for us then came back to life three days later. The real is mixed with the make believe; coloring their perception of the holiday.
Two thousand years ago Jesus gave up perfection for our imperfections. He suffered death on the cross so we could live. This was ugly, painful, sad. But, you know what was the ugliest, painfulness, saddest part of it all? Many people still did not believe that he was the Chosen King, the Redeemer, the Son of God.
So, somewhere between then and now, those that did believe mixed in the hard Truth around a holiday that celebrates spring; rebirth. Because maybe, just maybe, a child may learn the symbolism of Christ's rebirth too. Or, a mother might dress her family up for church this one time of the year and hear some good news that she didn't even know she needed to hear. While eating the Easter spread of ham and casseroles, some might bow their head and genuinely say thanks.
We combine Jesus' sacrifice with bunnies and baby chicks as an act of celebration. Finding chocolate hidden in Easter eggs can be a way to teach kids about finding Christ. Picking flowers and wearing sundresses reminds us to be joyful for the life that we've been given.
This is the beginning of Holy Week and the end of the Lenten season. May we enjoy all of the celebrations of the season while remembering the cost of the first celebration. Might we use the secular activities to teach the sacred act. Let us be joyful and thankful as we are reminded of the mercy we are continually shown.
Happy Easter week sweet friends.
Till next time, let your light shine!