Yep, I’m a little late on the Easter post, but since it’s such an important holiday, I figure a few days late isn’t going to kill anyone.
I grew up with Easter baskets and frilly dresses, and of course, church services. And then we’d always visit my Grandma Lung after church.
I’m not sure what Luke grew up with, but I get the impression that Easter baskets weren’t a part of the equation. Being a pastor’s kid, I’m sure church services were a pretty big part of the day, though.
Since we’ve had children, we’ve never done Easter baskets or egg hunts or anything like that. And it’s not that we’re opposed to them. But I don’t think we’ve quite determined how to properly celebrate Easter.
Certainly we should celebrate Easter as much as Christmas, which gets a lot of attention and celebration. It is simply amazing that an all-powerful God would humble himself and be born as a baby, to a young girl, in a barn. It’s almost more amazing to me that Jesus would defeat death and sin by dying a sinner’s death on the cross for us, descending into hell, and rising again on the third day.
So, here’s how it went down with the Rumleys this year…
On Thursday (our boy Caleb’s fourth birthday!), we attended a Maundy Thursday service at our church. It included readings, songs, Scripture, and a part where some leaders in the church washed everyone’s feet. Very moving, and appropriately somber for the occasion. Oh, duh, it also included communion in honor of Jesus’ last supper with his disciples prior to the crucifixion.
(For those of you who aren’t familiar with Maundy Thursday – I wasn’t until the last few years – the word “maundy” is derived from the Latin word for “command,” referring to the command Jesus gave his disciples at the Last Supper, to love and serve one another.)
The next day (after a really great playdate with the Perrys), we attended a Good Friday service at Alaska Baptist Church. It was a tenebrae service. “Tenebrae” is Latin for “shadows,” and the entire service is held in candlelight. The service itself is made up of songs and readings, and as it progresses, candles are blown out. The final candle is extinguished at the end (after mention of Christ’s death), and the attendees leave the service in quite somberness. It’s a fitting service for Good Friday, to be sure. Focusing on Jesus’ death truly does make the Easter celebration all that more meaningful.
Easter Sunday was a great celebration with our church family! We started just past 8am with a yummy breakfast together at church. Then began the *real* celebration – worship together with the body of Christ! The music was particularly moving, probably because after a weekend of focusing on Jesus’ death, we were singing songs about his resurrection and victory! Praise God for that!
Besides music and a sermon, the service also included a short presentation by Grace’s class (singing two songs and quoting two short Scripture passages) and a baptism. Really, could there be a more fitting time for a baptism?! The testimonies of those being baptized were very well thought-out and so encouraging. The one that stood out the most was a guy about our age who has been a believer for just over a year, and his testimony was FULL of Scripture. And he wasn’t reading something he’d written down. This was Scripture that he’d “hidden in his heart.” It was very moving, and incredibly convicting.
Anyway, here are some pictures from Easter Sunday…
I’m so very thankful that “while we were still sinners, Christ died for us” (Romans 5:8). AND that “He is RISEN!” (Luke 24:6).