Sunday, March 27, 2016

Renewal.


Today is Easter Sunday. Resurrection Sunday. 

There is a stark contrast between the celebration of Christmas and Easter. Yet we are essentially celebrating the same thing - the life of the greatest gift to mankind - Jesus Christ. I've never understood the stark contrast. And maybe in the most {& best?} Christian families, they are similar & celebrated in similar fashion. I grew up without much celebration on Easter Sunday. No reason. I certainly don't blame my parents for that. We always had an Easter egg hunt. The Easter bunny always came. Sometimes we had a fancy dinner. We never really went to church except a handful of times. We dressed up a couple times when I was very young {we have some photos to prove it}. We never did really take family photos - just some of me & my brother when I was 6. Those are the only ones I recall. I didn't grow up in the church. I probably went to actual church on Easter more when I was in high school & going on my own than I ever did as a child. When I went off to college & would come home for Spring Break, Easter often fell on the day I had to spend five hours driving back to campus. Then I ran off and got married & my husband and I have never been faithful churchgoers. We've never taken a family photo on Easter. We've never made a meal. We've honestly never acknowledged it outside of his giving me Easter baskets, my decorating for "spring" around the house & well, I guess that's about it. Sad, right? I'm actually pretty motivated to change that. We planned on going to sunrise service this year at a local amphitheater, but I've been battling some demons {& fatigue} & we decided on Saturday night that we needed to focus on me resting on Sunday. I still felt bad. Guilty. I really wanted to go. I truly became a Christian by choice in August of 2001. Since then I've lived my life for Christ & been a totally different person. In the last few years I've let old habits slip back in & depression/anxiety have reared their ugly heads {after coming to Christ those were GONE for many years}. 

I'm facing a life change. I guess it often takes things for us to realize other things. When someone goes to prison, they come to Christ. They're reborn. When someone is diagnosed & fights cancer, they come back to Christ. They fight to live & they fight through prayer & a growing daily relationship with Jesus. We all know it takes those things for us to wake up one day & realize something has to change. Often that voided feeling in the pits of our stomach {not to mention our soul} is a big gaping hole where JESUS fits. 

I've always celebrated {& gone all out for} Christmas. Why not Easter? It's a renewal. A rebirth. A resurrection. He LIVES. I want to live. I want to live through Christ. I want to live the life I'm capable of living. But I've got to come back & grow closer & nurture that relationship. Next year I will CELEBRATE Easter & all that it means. I will start new traditions with my husband. I will not be the hypocritical Christian any longer who celebrates in all the commercialization at Christmas time & yet no other time. I can't do that anymore. I will not be that person. 

Jesus Christ is why I am able to face tomorrow. 



Like I said, my husband always surprises me with something, bless him. We are going through a rough time right now. This card.... I will treasure it forever. The words & his own words inside brought me to my knees. Without Christ, we have nothing. Without faith, I have nothing. My husband knows that. He knows I rely on the Lord for strength. And he knows we will be relying on him from here on out. 


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