Ever since my husband and I started a family more than 30 years ago, Easter has been a big deal at our house: New dresses for the little girls, suspenders and crisp shorts for the little boys. Corsages or big bunches of daffodils. Coloring eggs and hiding them over and over…and over. See’s candy, Jelly Bellies, pastel M&Ms and Peeps in Easter baskets (or flowerpots painted with the kids’ names or big cereal bowls or sand buckets or hats…) A big Easter brunch of eggs and bacon, potatoes, blintzes, OJ and coffee after sunrise service. It’s not that we didn’t know the day was about Jesus rising from the dead. We definitely did, and we wanted to celebrate the Good News in a big way.
This Easter is different.
Even at UGM, this Easter will be different. We can’t invite the community in for a Sunrise Service by the river like we have for as long as we can remember. Greg won’t be standing on the stage in his black hat, singing hymns in his gravelly voice as the sun reflects off the water and begins to warm the chill air. Steve can’t come in to make the big, sticky cinnamon rolls.
I love these things. They reflect all the things I love in life – family, friends, food, community – but they are not the best thing.
The best thing starts today with Good Friday, with seeing the lengths to which God was willing to go to have a relationship with us.
“For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.” John 3:16
“He who did not spare his own Son, but gave him up for us all—how will he not also, along with him, graciously give us all things?” Romans 8:32
The best thing is God’s love.
When all the other good things start to fall away, I am prone to doubt God’s love. If he really loved me, he would __________. Fill in the blank.
Good Friday, followed by Easter, is one of the ways that God binds my heart to his.
God's love makes change possible for us all.