Easter is upon us. A time to ponder and reflect. To cry and weep. To laugh and celebrate. To eat chocolate, to watch the arrival of spring, and the renewal of life. For some it is the time of love and joy, for others it is a time of great sorrow. And for the follower of Jesus Christ, it is a time to celebrate, no, rejoice in the very thing that gives us life.
Don’t pass it by.
Don’t let it slip away unnoticed. Perhaps it sprang up on you, and you can hardly believe it, or perhaps you have been anticipating it since Christmas. Regardless, it deserves great attention.
The truth of Easter is the very thing that brings such joy and wonder to the celebration every year. God being holy and unable to interact with the sinful people that he loved and created, sent down his Son to humble himself as a man and die on a cross to act in our place and wash us clean from sin, guilt and shame. The best part of this of course is that it was planned.
God knew upon giving us the choice that we would turn away, and that things would never be the same. Before the world was made he had the blueprint ready on redeeming a lost people, who would otherwise be eternally separated from God. Adam’s feet had not yet touched the fertile and lush lawn of the Garden of Eden, and Eve’s hand not yet even touched a single fruit before the courses were set in line to bring humanity out of the ditch and back on the narrow but beautiful path to an eternal relationship with our Heavenly Father.
Perhaps the reason we pass this by so easily is because we have heard it so many times before, thus bringing about countless sermons to see the Easter story in a “new light.” Perhaps this is what motivated Mel Gibson to put together his “Passion of the Christ,” to reveal to the masses of North America the horror the Messiah endured.
Or perhaps it’s because we don’t fully understand it. I mean, when was the last time you sacrificed a lamb? For a people so unaccustomed to the concepts of sacrifice, sin, holiness, etc, the whole “substitutionary atonement” deal can be a little out of our league.
Or of course, it could be the over-marketing of chocolate bunnies and eggs that turn Easter into but another time when large corporations take advantage of families, couples and individuals with shopping carts and lined wallets. Or perhaps the faces of cute, small, tender barn animals have burned deep scars into our souls until the end of our earthly days.
Whatever the reason, I urge you: don’t pass it by. Take time this Easter to ponder, to praise, to celebrate. To simply stand in awe of a God who did what it took to bring home the lamb that was lost, to welcome back the prodigal son.
Don’t pass it by.