Well, it has been a confusing winter – warm then cold – a lot of snow to no snow at all. March has certainly been windy. Even the birds at our feeders seem bewildered. But hey, “Spring has sprung!” [I’m tempted, but I’ll refrain from posting my long-standing “Spring has Sprung” poem here.] It’s now ‘officially’ Spring!
The “Big Event” for April is … (drum roll please) EASTER! Now I know that not everyone likes the use of the “Easter.” Some prefer the more scriptural title of “Resurrection Day.” Unger’s Bible Dictionary says, “The word Easter is of Saxon origin, Eastra, the goddess of spring, in whose honour sacrifices were offered about Passover time each year. By the eighth century Anglo–Saxons had adopted the name to designate the celebration of Christ’s resurrection.” That sort of explains how Easter became the holiday [Holy Day?] as we know it today. [There are scholars who believe that Spring isn’t even the right season for Easter!]
I think the most important thing is not the name it goes by but what it means to us personally. We celebrate Easter at our church with “Easter Celebration” aimed especially at the kids. We use egg hunts, games and animals to bring them in, but our object is get them – parents and children alike – to see and experience God’s love, demonstrated amazingly in the Resurrection.
Here are a few scriptural examples of the love and power that resonates from the Resurrection:
Jesus was informed of His friend Lazarus’ sickness, and waited awhile before coming to Bethany to see him. I believe it was because Jesus knew that by the time He was told of Lazarus’ sickness, Lazarus was already dead. [No Uber service back in those days] On His way Jesus met Martha, who was only seeing an “end of days resurrection.” Jesus responded:
John 11:25, 26 – Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in Me, though he may die, he shall live. 26 And whoever lives and believes in Me shall never die. Do you believe this?”
After the actual event – the Resurrection – Jesus breathed on His disciples, introducing them to the Holy Spirit, and sent them out to minister. Those rag tag bunch of guys became the force through which God changed the world! And what did they preach? The Resurrection.
Consider this verse from Early Church history:
Acts 4:33 – And with great power the apostles gave witness to the resurrection of the Lord Jesus. And great grace was upon them all.
So, Easter – Resurrection Day – whatever you call it, celebrates the most important event in all history. Someone said, “History is His Story.” The only negatives about the holiday are focusing merely on bunnies and candy, or that resurrection is only celebrated once a year. But we can each overcome these on our own and make sure that we build our lives on the power of the Resurrection!