Why is Easter Sunday so important? Besides the fact that we get to eat a lot of chocolate, go hunting for hidden eggs, and no longer have to remember to fast from meat on Fridays?
Easter Sunday is important because it is the greatest feast of the year. Generations (centuries long) of people looked forward to participate in such an event as the Messiah on earth. We are the lucky (a.k.a. blessed) ones that actually get to experience what these generations of people hoped to experience: to live a life in Christ while on earth; to participate in the glory of God the Father before death; and, to be a disciple of the Messiah (of Jesus, Who is the Christ) through the Holy Spirit.
Back before the Word became Flesh and dwelt among us, the chosen people of God longed for this opportunity. The very opportunity that we get to live day-in and day-out in this post-modern world, 2,000 years after the Messiah walked its earth.
You will hear the phrase: "Liar, Lunatic, or God." Jesus claimed to be God. If someone walked our streets today claiming to be God, what would we think? Jesus was either a liar, a lunatic, or He actually is God.
You will also hear the explanation: "Without the Resurrection, our faith is naught." Jesus said He would die and rise on the third day in accordance with the Scriptures. He then did just that. He died and on the third day, He rose from the dead with over 500 eye witness accounts of His Resurrection. His case would hold up in a court of law today, hands down!
But, you won't really care about any of it beyond your understanding of it until you figure out why Easter Sunday is important to you. So, why is Easter Sunday important to you?
Why is Easter Sunday important to you?
I'll tell you why it is important to me. Then, think about it for yourself. Make sure you have a good reason. It is the greatest feast of the year.
Today is a new day. It is filled with joy, with hope, with wonder. Each moment has yet to be lived. Each minute is a memory in the making. The Lord has made this day. He has made this day for you. What will be done with it?
In a busy world we forget that each moment we are alive. We are living, breathing, creatures sustained by Someone other than ourselves. Our very purpose is to be loved by God and to love Him in return. Our life is to be nothing but lived, enjoyed, and relished in. We are to "be", not to "do". Jesus wants us to give life abundantly, with fullness of grace and hope in Him. Joyously, He wants us walking around on earth living life, being His children: smiling at the sunrise; thanking Him for the new spring; taking courage in the hard times; respectfully obeying His commands; loving Him, ourselves, and others; and, enjoying the time He has given us.
Much of our life is a checkbox. We wake up and live our day checking off the items on our day's list: shower; workout; make breakfast; eat; get the kids ready; drink coffee; drive to the office; work; grocery shop on the way home; pack lunches for the next day; take care of house items; watch a TV show; read on a computer; and, go to bed.
What if today you did all those same things but you did not focus on them? What if today you focused on the world and the environment around you? Notice the little things. While reading on a computer, look up, take in your surroundings, breathe deeply in, sigh it out, relax your shoulders, be at peace in your heart, and thank God for the moment. While driving into work be careful while you rush but look at the world around you. Look at God's creation: the trees, the green patches of land, the people He made and loves, and the sky. Do not think about the office or the job. Breathe deeply in, sigh it out, and think of the world around you. Thank God that you are one of the creations in it. As you are getting your kids ready, watch how they watch you. See how their little minds and bodies keenly reflect your attitude. Notice how they pay attention to you and desire your love even in that little moment of getting ready. Give them a hug. Tell them you love them even if they are teenagers and giving you bad attitudes.
Life is to be lived in the little moments. Holiness is to be grown out of these little moments in ordinary lives. Gratitude is to be had in these little moments. God is to be found in them. Peace is to be received in them.
At that time Jesus said in reply, "I give praise to you, Father, Lord of Heaven and earth, for although you have hidden these things from the wise and the learned you have revealed them to the childlike. Yes, Father, such has been your gracious will...Come to me, all you who labor and are burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am meek and humble of heart; and you will find rest for your selves. For my yoke is easy, and my burden light." (Matthew 11:25-26;28-30)
He is eternally present. He is eternally here in the here and now. It is in the little moments of life where God is found, where our burdens can be laid to rest by focusing on different things, and where life no longer seems to be a checklist of what needs to be done but instead a life to be joyfully lived.
Thank you, God, for your presence in this moment. In all moments that we live.
Ashley and Susan
Two women asking the world to not just hope, but to Hope in Love.