Sunday, April 24, 2011

A Special Day called Easter!

Today has been a great day in our church, community and our family. Why?. Because we celebrated the physical resurrection that happened 1,981 years ago today. “Why do you search among the dead for the living, He is Risen”. The recorded historical facts of the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ are a truly supernatural encounter that forever changed and continues to change the world. But just like those who denied it then many still ignore Him today.

Christians meet weekly to celebrate the resurrection with worship, fellowship and prayer. However, once a year we put a special emphasis on the actual Sunday when it occurred. In our local community many come out on Saturday night before Easter to decorate rough wooden crosses with flowers. This past year over 50 crosses placed in front of local businesses on the main drag were set up on Friday as blank wooden crosses and by Saturday late night they were displaying flowers all over them for view on the dawn of the forthcoming dawn.

My older daughter is still in Brazil studying abroad through her college. Last week she told us that in that country everything shuts down on Thursday until Monday morning. They truly acknowledge the Passion Week when Jesus was crucified and resurrected from schools, businesses and government agencies.

This past Saturday I went to a local hardware store and noticed the sign ‘closed on Easter’. After discussing it with the clerk I was told It was likely the last year because the new owners wanted to be open seven days a week.

After our worship services and the powerful presence of Jesus our family had a special treat and went out for lunch in a local closed Mall. As we drove we noticed many stores closed down including Target and many major retailers. It was refreshing to see the mail parking lot almost completely empty. As we got into the restaurant my wife told me a comment she overhead between a couple people trying to shop when given an answer by the security guard. The conversation went like this: Shopper 1 ‘Why is the mall closed?’ Guard: Because it is Easter. Shopper 2 to shopper 1: Why is the mall closed? Shopper 1: Because some man named Jesus died along time ago’.

It is wonderful that the cross and the resurrection still have the power to shut down stores. Those stores and business may become fewer and fewer, but it is still wonderful that many of the holidays that commemorate different aspects of the life of the Savior almost 2000 years ago still have the power over hearts, minds and lives in many ways we often don’t realize.

My comment to shopper 1 If I could have heard him would have been. “He did die, but I want you to know he died for you and he is not dead. For He is risen! Thank God for the global holiday called Easter that commemorates the passion of Christ.

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