He is risen!
Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! According to his great mercy, he has caused us to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead1 Peter 1:3
This is my first year as a Christian on Resurrection Sunday. Here in the US there are two celebrations that occur every year on the same day. There is mostly-secular Easter, featuring bunnies, egg decorating, egg hiding-and-finding, candy, new clothes, new shoes, Easter bonnets, Easter parades, fancy ham dinners with friends and family, and a general celebration of Spring. Many Christians who rarely attend church services do go to a church service on this day, which commemorates the resurrection of Christ from the dead. That is the celebration I knew about before I became a Christian.
But there’s another completely different holy day observance that I am only just learning about for the first time this year. It is a period of deep meditation on God’s gift of salvation and Jesus’s suffering for our sins. It is a celebration of the most important event in Christianity, the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. It is a time for Christians to reflect on the enormity of what we have been given, to appreciate and give thanks. It is a time for us to contemplate not only what He has given us, but also what it means to receive this gift of Eternal life and forgiveness of our sins, and to receive that enormous gift without guilt or shame.
It is a time to reflect seriously about what we can do better or differently to keep Jesus’s command to love one another as He has loved us.
I have learned that some call this celebration Resurrection Day … and whatever the worldly politics may be behind what we call it, I like it. I like distinguishing the deeply holy event that I am observing for the first time this year from the almost unrelated secular one, which I am not.