Every one of the growing up years I can remember, my mom would take us shopping for an Easter outfit. It was the fashion event of the year! My older sister and I would talk for WEEKS about our Easter outfit, comparing hats and gloves and making sure our white Mary Janes were spotless. One year in particular, I remember the shopping event being a really fun mom-and-me date. We went to the mall, found the dress, had our traditional lunch of a soft pretzel with cheese and a Dr. Pepper, then moved on to the shoe/glove/hat hunt. Ever since that year I have considered Easter to be a great mother/daughter bonding time! Cloe and I have made sugar cookies in the past, cut into perfect little egg and cross shapes. Naturally, it takes me 3 times as long to clean up from this adventure than the adventure itself actually took. But totally worth it, right? I love those memories.
Last year we attempted to make a batch of meringue “tomb” cookies. Turns out that in order for these “hollow” cookies to turn out, you need an oven that retains heat. But they’re a great idea! Every step of making them has a Scripture that goes along with it. http://allrecipes.com/Recipe/Easter-Story-Cookies/Detail.aspx
So far, we have yet to have room in the budget for me to take the girls shopping for new outfits for Easter, but it’s sweet to see how God has provided even for that silly tradition! Every year, the girls somehow have had a new dress to wear for that special Sunday. This year they have these adorable sundresses that “Aunt” Mary Haag sent them. Brennah wore a little dress that our sweet friend Chelsey sent while I was still pregnant. They all looked adorable! Am I allowed to say that? Anyway, they did.
Another fun tradition was have is our Resurrection Eggs. The girls LOVE this! We read a little piece of Jesus’ story every night for the 11 days leading up to Resurrection Sunday. Each day a plastic eggs contains something representing what we read that day. Then, on Easter morning, we get to open the 12th egg!
My favorite part is when I ask my girls to explain all those things in the plastic eggs. They can go through the whole thing, telling us about Jesus being the King, coming in peace on a donkey. About Judus “Discariot” betraying his friend Jesus, the soldiers beating Jesus and playing a game to win his cloak. And the minute we open the gold egg, Cloe says “oh, it’s empty like the tomb!”
I have never lost that feeling of wonder when I hear the words that the angel said to the women looking for Jesus… “He is risen, just as He said!” I almost wonder if there wasn’t a trace of sarcasm tossed in there. If *I* had been the one saying it to those women, I guarantee that there would’ve been some sarcasm in there. “He’s been telling you about this weekend for years, and yet here you here, freaking out. You have no idea what’s going on, do you? Why can you not just hear Him and believe what He tells you? Of COURSE He isn’t here! Do you really think a simple thing like death could hold our Jesus? The Creator of the Universe, King of Kings, Savior of mankind? No. He has risen, just as He said he was going to!”
This inspires me to ask myself… am I believing Jesus? What has He said to me or about me that I’m just being thick-headed about? Maybe not intentionally. But not believing, nonetheless. I think it’s absolutely crucial that we believe that God is Who He says He is. And not just the parts that are convenient to us at any given time. People love to hear that God is love, but don’t necessarily want to hear that God is also just. They like to say that He is good, but not so much that He is THE way, THE truth and THE life. He isn’t merely one of the ways… He is THE way. I think we would be wise to pay attention when God says “I am…” and make a point of believing every word of it.
Not only do we need to believe that God is Who He says He is, but we need to believe that we are who He says we are. First and foremost, according to 1 John 3:1, I am a child of God! Eph 1:3-8 has a whole separate list of who I am. Blessed, chosen, adopted, favored, redeemed and forgiven. Imagine the difference in our lives if every decision and action was first weighed in against this list of who God says we are. I’m thinkin’ it would most definitely be a positive change!
Someday, if my life story makes it into a book somewhere, I would hate for the author to be able to say “if only she had believed God…” I believe the women that went to Jesus’ tomb loved Him with all their hearts! But somehow they missed the boat when He told them what was going to happen that weekend so long ago. I pray that I don’t make the same mistake. Every word He speaks to my heart and has spoken in His Word is 100% true… today I am resolving to believe it all, ALL the time.
Happy Easter! I hope your day has been wonderful and that you were able to spend it with people you love!
HE IS RISEN!!!