There could not have been a more perfect day than Easter Sunday this year, the year from Hades. The real themes of life, death, burial, resurrection, all are summed up in that glorious day of Christ’s victory over the grave.
We had a somber, quiet Good Friday service at our church. I always find it dry, to be honest. There’s Scripture readings and hymns and a short sermon. It should be dry ... it’s death. Dried up hearts, left hopeless. Is this all there is? What’s the use?
Saturday had me cleaning and preparing food. With a final flourish of the vacuum cleaner and placing the last chocolate egg in the last Easter basket, we were ready for Sunday’s flurry. All night, I kept waking up in anticipation.
As the light broke forth over the horizon and our stiff limbs began to stir, my husband said “He is risen!” He is risen indeed. We played an old favorite song from Don Francisco, “He is Alive!” Starting with its somewhat cheesy 70s vibe, it ends with chill bumps and tears from the glory of it.
Then there was church, happy faces, lovely ladies and children decked out in new Easter finery. As I listened to the hymns and sermon, I recalled my childhood days and many joyous Easter mornings with little white gloves, hats, patent leather shoes. Then our family would travel over to MawMaw’s house by the railroad tracks. There was a groaning table filled with ham, deviled eggs, potato salad, baked beans, scads of desserts. We ate, the old folks talked, and we would play all afternoon with our dozens of cousins. These were some of the sweetest memories I cherish with that side of the family.
Fast forward to this year, this most difficult of times. I find myself ensconced on our front porch. There’s ham and sundries in our bellies as we laugh and talk. We’re the old folks now.
Eight of the grandchildren scamper and play in the yard while dibs were being taken on turns for holding our week-old grandson. It was late afternoon before I got my chance. The air was fragrant and sweet, filled with sun and blossoms blowing. Everyone lingered at the day, not wanting it to end. My heart was about to burst with the joy of family; the joy of a resurrected Savior who saw fit to rescue us, starting way back with my folks and leading to a legacy of love, forgiveness, redemption.
The dry bones leaped and sprang forth from the tomb, defeating the snake and death. He’s right there, hands open to us. What we can see is not all there is...
“For as by one man came death, by one man has come also the resurrection of the dead. For as in Adam all die, so also in Christ shall all be made alive.” I Cor. 15:21,22.
It’s a great mystery. I see it on this dear day, spread out before me in real time. Glory be.