Easter is a time, not just for remembrance, but for great celebration and evangelism!
“… in him, we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses, according to the riches of his grace.”
I’m thankful for the incarnation, for the warm cuddly images of Baby Jesus. But without the cross, Christmas would mean nothing.
Like the sudden appearance of a rabbit in early spring, Easter sneaks up on us as we are recovering from Christmas’s excess. But Easter’s timing close on the heels of Christmas is not the only reason this holiday sneaks up.
Easter is not about a birth, but a death, which begs the question, when was the last time you wanted to gaze on a bloody, mangled body? Is the thought even too much?
But a newborn babe? Ahhhh … we smile and willingly gaze into that beautiful face with snuggle-worthy sweet cheeks. Our hearts long to drink in the newness, the hope wrapped in downy soft newborn flesh.
Do you feel the difference?
This is the conundrum of our Christian faith—that Jesus was born to die. The innocence of His birth stayed with Him to His last breath on the cross. There He hung—naked, tortured—and there He died. Willingly He endured all of this for us because of infinite love.
Even though we understand the importance of Easter, most people prefer Christmas. The story of the teenage virgin who bravely birthed a tiny baby king is a much happier one.
But I fear that we, the redeemed, have wrongly reversed our affections.
Most of us give Easter little thought, time, or preparation.
We take a minimalist approach to celebrating the greatest event of history. Or we follow the lead of retailers and their softer, gentler symbols for Easter: bunnies, chicks, chocolate candies in colorful plastic eggs, and wearing new pastel clothing.
We ignore what Jesus commanded us to do … to remember His death (1 Corinthians 11:23-26). He never asked us to commemorate His birth.
The Incarnation and Resurrection are inseparably linked. Our celebrations of these miraculous events need to be proportionate and more balanced in our focus and attention. Don’t shy away from Easter; instead, elevate it to the status it deserves. Your faith and that of others will benefit.
Awed by the cross, Easter truly is my favorite holiday.
I hope you’ll join me and others in focusing on the miraculous wonders of Easter and become #easterpeople too! The heart of Christianity is not what we must do, but what He has done! For us!
Christ is risen!
Christ is risen indeed!
In His Word
Read through Romans 3:22-24 and Romans 5:8 and write down all the things God did for us through Christ. Thank God for sending His Son to die on the cross for our sins.
In Your Life
Here are three ways to begin to correct our upended thinking. I believe it’s time to change how we celebrate Easter, and I hope you will agree.
- In your home, fully display the importance of this holiest of holidays. The colors of Easter are red, white, and gold; not springy hues of pink, yellow, and lime green. Remember His blood, the color of red wine, His risen appearance which was dazzling white, and His victory worthy of a crown of gold! This year consider wearing all white or shades of off-white and soft khaki on Easter Sunday. Set an all-white table with lots of white candles for your Resurrection Day feast to remember the purity of His life and death. Or center your table with a white lamb to celebrate our future as His bride at our marriage to the Lamb when we will be dressed in “fine linen, bright and pure—for the fine linen is the righteous deeds of the saints” (Revelation 19:8).
- Worship with exuberance what Christ has done for us on Resurrection Sunday. Psalm 149:3 invites us to“Praise His name with dancing, making melody to Him with tambourine and lyre!” This is the kind of worship the Resurrection calls for. Does your Easter day look like this? It should.
- Celebrate the sacrifice and miracle of Easter with others. When we understand more of the immensity of His sacrifice, our gratitude will lead to a celebration—with laughter and music and feasting—far surpassing that of Christmas.Get creative! Make your Easter party grand, and if weather permits, have your lunch or dinner feast outside with lights and music and revelry. Invite friends and neighbors just as we do at Christmas.
Easter, the celebration of the cross and Resurrection, should be a time of contagious, overflowing evangelism.
To help you and your family focus on Easter, I’ve created a package of resources called the Journey to Easter collection. It features a flip-style calendar with devotional readings leading up to Easter.
In addition to Barbara’s Easter collection, her latest book is My Heart, Every His: Prayers for Women. You can find Barbara on her website at Ever Thine Home where she encourages women in their faith and family relationships. Also, stop by Instagram to follow Barbara at @everthinehome.