Two Sides of Easter

It’s a holiday; it’s a HOLY day.

Which it is for you depends on what you believe.  If you see this just as a religious event, then it’s easy to focus on a Friday holiday for the kids, a time for a family dinner, an EGGstravaganza for kids and grandkids.  (In my former church we nearly killed ourselves with Easter egg hunts, until we realized after 5 years of those efforts, that people came for the eggs only and immediately dispersed with no interest in attending our church.  They left even as we were starting our intentional program for telling the Easter account.)  For so many in our culture, it’s a weekend with family, but nothing more.  Bunnies, eggs, and food are all wonderful things, but if it ends there, it’s just a holiday.

If you are a follower of Jesus and you hold a powerful hope because of the resurrection, then Easter is the day when we cling joyfully to hope, think of people we will see again in Heaven, and our gatherings are a celebration of Jesus, not just eggs, food, and family.  In a way, Easter is the “all-or-nothing” day of history.  If it’s true, it changes everything–how we grieve, how we live.  It is the day that history shifted for all eternity.  It’s holy, so much more than just a holiday.

Paul drew an even greater contrast when he wrote the Corinthian believers:

The message of the cross is foolish to those who are headed for destruction! But we who are being saved know it is the very power of God.

Easter is our hope because the power of God is most clear in the crucifixion and resurrection of Jesus.  Crucifixion is our most painful day; resurrection Sunday is our most joyful day.

Will you make it a HOLY day, or just another holiday?

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