One day after we celebrated “Easter” or as we call it around here, “Resurrection Sunday”, I was reminiscing about the whole weekend and the following notions and ideas took over my thoughts:
Easter still means something special in the state of Texas.
While many things have changed, namely the number of stores that were on a normal Sunday schedule or those that had shorter hours, people as a whole still have a desire to worship on that day. In central Texas, it is still a family thing. Families get together and attend the church of their faith or the faith of their parents for this day.
Present were the many, many guests. I met church member’s moms, dads, sisters, brothers, children, and grand children that came to worship on Easter as a family.
Missing were the suits & ties, bonnets and corsages of the days of old.
Easter still brings out the desire to serve
As I sat and listened to the choir and praise team practice at 9:00 am, I began thinking about and acknowledging the number of volunteers needed to make this weekend a glorious tribute to our God.
On Saturday, we reached out to the community by having an “Egg Hunt” and pancake breakfast. During the week the Grounds team ensured the manicure of the fields and that the height of the grass where the egg hunt would take place was “just right.”
During the weeks leading up to Saturday, people volunteered to fill over 3,000 plastic eggs with candy, balloons, suckers and toys. Signs were made, parking lots identified, registration tables were set up and manned.
Gifts were sought out, purchased and packaged to give as “gift baskets” to some in attendance.
Early in the morning, the sun was beginning to rise, the cooks began to arrive in order to fill the stomachs of all those that would come this morning. Many of our men, at one point I counted 9, were happily mixing pancake batter into some of the largest bowls I had ever seen. Stories and fellowship was in abundance as “French Toast” and pancakes were being cooked and stored in the warmers for the soon arriving visitors, guests and members.
The army of “egg placers” (I know that is not a name, but its all I could come up with) were bringing out the bags and boxes of stuffed eggs to the fields. When the call went out to “put out the eggs” they looked like ants moving out in all directions. I counted 15, which grew in number to ensure each child would get their fair share in the hunt for the eggs.
Approaching 10:00 am, the official start time, were over 200 children and their families. Workers, helpers and organizers were actively making sure each child was in the right “age group” area and understood what was about to happen. Photographers and videographers were at the ready. Two drone mounted cameras were in the air poised to capture the “great land rush” for the eggs. And finally, the “GO” was announced and within 5 minutes, every egg was found and carried away by happy, smiling and joyous children and their parents.
Upon entering the Family Life Center, I saw an army of workers making sure that each and every guest was greeted and shown to a table. Some were carrying the trays for children and those that needed assistance.
Everywhere I looked I found joyous volunteers meeting happy guests. It was eutrophic. There was so much happiness in serving and being served.
Present were children, families, workers and volunteers.
Absent were the “real”, “dye colored” eggs.
Those thoughts were washed from my mind as I listened to the choir, 20 strong, singing two songs that were all about the risen Savior. The “Praise Team” and Brother Bob added to the mix and I felt like the Apostle John being raised to the “third heaven.” The glorious thought of what we were celebrating was broken by the voices of the volunteers in the media center as they were making sure the sound and lighting were just right.
I looked around the worship center to see men and women praying. I looked at the beautiful lighting of the room, which was punctuated by the magnificently draped cross covered in white satin, standing where every eye would be able to see it when the lights came on and were focused on the fact that Jesus was risen.
Present were the dedicated volunteers and followers of Jesus
Absent were the headlines of the day.
Easter is Still About the Resurrection
With all the lighting, media, music and melodies, the focus is still on the fact that our Savior, the truth was relayed that the Son of God, did not stay in the borrowed tomb, but was raised, as He said.
Jesus is not still hanging on the cross.
Jesus’ body is not laying in a grave.
The Roman guard is not still guarding.
The visitors to the tomb were exhilarated by the news, “He is not here. He has risen as He said.”
Jesus is at the right had of the Father. Waiting for the word from God to gather His Church.
I began singing that old hymn, “Christ the Lord is risen today. Halleluiah!”
Present were the worshipers and believers.
Missing was the body of Jesus.