To me, celebrating Easter has very, very little to do with the pretty dyed eggs, the baskets of goodies, or even the beautiful church service that we will attend. I celebrate Easter for one reason: I believe that Jesus is exactly who He claimed to be.
I believe He is the Messiah spoken of in prophecy all throughout the Old Testament. I believe He is the same God who spoke to Moses in the burning bush… the same One who used His finger to etch the Law into stone. The same God who playfully told Sarah that she had to give her baby a name that means “laughter” after the incident where she laughed at Him for revealing that she would become pregnant in her old age. I believe He is the One who closed the door of the ark after Noah and his family were safely boarded inside. I believe He is the One that both Hagar and Isaiah saw with their eyes. I believe He was the One walking around in the fire with Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego. And I believe that together with The Father & The Holy Spirit, Yeshua- the Son- created & played with the smallest subatomic particles… all of the protons, neutrons- the whole shebang- as they strategically designed and built everything we know as the universe. I believe He still enjoys playing with stars and watching supernovas just as much as He enjoys watching me play with my daughter. I believe He loves me so greatly that He thought of me when they (God) set the plan of redemption into motion. I believe that together as One Triune God, they all agreed on the Son leaving His Divinity in order to be born into humanity- still fully God but wrapped in flesh– to be the Savior of the world. I believe that when He sweat blood in the garden as He asked for that cup to pass from Him, the thing on His mind was not the brutality & torture of the Roman crucifixion, but instead was the unsettling horror of being separated from the One Godhead that He existed with outside of our time realm for eternity past…. To know that even for a short time, the Father & the Spirit would have to turn their backs on Him and reject Him as He became the sacrificial Lamb & paid our penalty. I believe that during this time, Christ wasn’t the Only One suffering- I believe the suffering was extreme for the entire Holy Trinity of God. And I believe that they followed through with their Divine plan because the end result was worth it- that when we accept Jesus and what He did for us, we get to experience a relationship with God so deep that any human relationship pales in comparison. I believe that after three days, the tomb where His body lay was empty, and I believe He rose from the dead and will likewise resurrect me from death as well. I believe that after walking the earth a little while longer and revealing Himself to many more, He ascended back to His Throne in Heaven and continues to reign over us with glory and honor and power. And I believe in all of the prophetic words that state what is still to come- that He will return. That He will put an end to all the violence and suffering and evil this world has been corrupted with. That He will once and for all destroy the enemy of our souls and take those of us who have accepted His ultimate act of love home for good. I believe I will spend eternity awestruck by His Presence. I believe we will still laugh together. I believe God will throw the most incredible Wedding Feast of the Lamb that goes above and beyond what we even perceive it to be, and I believe that we’ll all be talking about it for the rest of time. I believe we will dance Hand in hand and sing and go on many new adventures together… and talk about our old adventures, as well. And I believe that He wants this for ALL of us & is patiently waiting for so many to have the moment I did when I threw back my weary head and said, “Ok, I believe You, & I want to follow You. I’m all yours!”
In the year 2007, I accepted His Sacrificial Love and Lordship over my life, and I have slowly but surely been transformed from the inside out. Believe me when I say it has taken a lot of time to weed out the messes I’ve made and filter out the wrong assumptions that the world has filled my brain with over the years, but each day I live, I grow more and more into the person He created me to be. I believe that despite what this world is offering in terms of spirituality, there is only one pathway to true salvation, and it is found in Christ alone. Not in our works…. not by doing our best to be a “good person.” Not by performing religious customs or yielding to a higher earthly authority to intercede for us. (We get that access ourselves. That curtain was torn in two for good reason, and I trust that when Jesus said, “It is finished,” He really meant that it was, in fact, finished.)
Believe me, we ALL fall short of perfect, and He knows the struggles we deal with on a daily basis… God has made this incredibly easy on us, (hard on Him, but easy on us nonetheless), and it’s all done out of love. I see day in and day out many, many people who spend time on social media posting and reposting philosophies that might sound good to our earthly ears, but, in truth, they have nothing to back them up as fact besides people wanting them to be true. I’m sorry if that sounds like I’m being arrogant or insensitive because those are never my intentions, but I love people in general SO much that I cannot not say anything. In fact, I would be a monster if I didn’t talk about this. There is so much more I could say, but I’ll leave it at this: I believe with every ounce of my body, mind, and soul that salvation is found in the death and resurrection of our Creator, and I believe Him when He says that if you seek the Truth with all of your heart– laying aside your presuppositions, your biases, your tainted feelings towards the church and towards people- you will find Him… And that Truth will set you free.
That, my friends, is what I celebrate on Easter.