April 3, 2010

No Chocolate Bunnies Here

Reflecting on Easter.  At least I'm trying to.

I was telling Tedd today that it doesn't feel like Easter.  He laughed, amused, and said "no, it doesn't."  Why not, I wondered.  I guess we're just used to Easter bunnies, candy, family gatherings, spring flowers, sunrise services, and colored eggs when it's Easter...that's what makes it feel like Easter to us.  Interesting.

It's just hot here and feels like any other weekend (with the exception that people leave town for vacation and stores close for "Holy Week"), so how can we make it feel like Easter around here??

Now that all the Americanized Easter fluff has been stripped away, all we've got left of Easter around here is, well, the very heart of it...Jesus.

Today, being the day that many Christians remember the death of Christ, we listened to the story of Christ's crucifixion and resurrection according to Matthew (audio Bible).  "Let's make this our family tradition," Tedd said.  "Okay," I smiled.

As we listened, I just couldn't grasp the weight of His death...
It's not just that He was tortured, though that alone I can barely fathom, but He was God on that cross.  The very Creator of all that exists humbled Himself enough to become weak flesh, and what's more, He took the beating and the mockery and the shame and the hatred...why would He do that?  He's God; and He had every right to stay right where He was...

It seems He truly loves us...
beyond all measure...

trying to wrap my tiny little brain around it...trying to fill my heart up with it...trying to digest it...

How deep the Father's love for us,
How vast beyond all measure
That He should give His only Son
To make a wretch His treasure

How great the pain of searing loss,
The Father turns His face away
As wounds which mar the Chosen One,
Bring many sons to glory

Behold the Man upon a cross,
My sin upon His shoulders
Ashamed I hear my mocking voice,
Call out among the scoffers

It was my sin that held Him there
Until it was accomplished
His dying breath has brought me life
I know that it is finished

I will not boast in anything
No gifts, no power, no wisdom
But I will boast in Jesus Christ
His death and resurrection

Why should I gain from His reward?
I cannot give an answer
But this I know with all my heart
His wounds have paid my ransom


- from the hymn, "How Deep the Father's Love for Us"
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