My Easter..err..Springtime Thoughts

I knew this day was coming. Once folks began arguing over whether or not to greet people with “Merry Christmas” or “Happy Holidays” I knew it would only be a matter of time before Easter would come under it’s on attack. The schools started this process of de-Easterizing (is that a word?) this time of the year a while back when Easter vacation was turned into Spring Break. So it was of no surprise to me as I watched on the local news the other night a group of Christians who were upset that stores are no longer calling it an Easter holiday but springtime holiday and Easter egg hunts are now being called Spring egg hunts complete with springtime bunnies. As I sat and listened carefully to both sides of the argument I was left to wonder for myself, are we really missing the point?

Without getting into a long history lesson of the origins of the word Easter, all you have to know is this, Jesus never called it Easter. He never once mentioned that after his resurrection we would remember him by egg hunts and chocolate bunnies. When did Christians begin to believe that it was so critical to combine the most important day in the history of our faith with pretty dresses and baskets filled with fake grass? I’m not saying “Easter” isn’t fun. I have two young kids and they’ve been hiding plastic eggs around our house for the past month. They are looking forward to the Easter bunny, chocolate, and whatever other little surprise he might leave. But in the mist of all that fun I’m quick to point out that there is a far more important event coming up, it’s the celebration of the resurrection of Jesus. We can call this time of the year anything we want and we can celebrate it however we would like, but the fact remains that if you more concerned about the name of an event instead of the reason behind it, then you have greatly missed the point.

I for one am glad to distance my faith and what this season means to me from our man made created holiday called Easter. If my kids grow up more concerned about fighting to keep the “Easter” name connected with eggs and bunnies then with sharing the good news of Christ resurrection, what kind of father have I been? If we as Christians are more concerned about making sure the political correct government and retailers stay out of our religious names then celebrating what Christ sacrifice means for us then what kind of followers are we? A season is not made by a name, it’s made by an event. And this event has nothing to do with bunnies, eggs, or the word Easter. It has to do solely with the victory of Jesus and the hope, faith and forgiveness that is offered to all because of it.

“On the first day of the week, very early in the morning, the women took the spices they had prepared and went to the tomb. They found the stone rolled away from the tomb, but when they entered, they did not find the body of the Lord Jesus. While they were wondering about this, suddenly two men in clothes that gleamed like lightning stood beside them. In their fright the women bowed down with their faces to the ground, but the men said to them, "Why do you look for the living among the dead? He is not here; he has risen! Remember how he told you, while he was still with you in Galilee: 'The Son of Man must be delivered into the hands of sinful men, be crucified and on the third day be raised again.' " Then they remembered his words.” Luke 24:1-8


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