Holy Week: Prepare for Easter with Your Family
We reveal to ourselves and others what is important to us by the way we celebrate. Is the season before Easter mainly a hassle or is it a time of considering God's work in our lives?
Growing up in the South at a time when there was a lot more etiquette in the air, I learned an important lesson about Easter: That's the day you can begin to wear white shoes again after winter. Fortunately, my family and church taught me more crucial lessons about the holiday that marks the crux of the Christian's life.
Crucial, crux, holiday -- in these words we see even our language bowing to the essential nature of the event we remember during Lent and Easter. Good Friday is not just a day off work; it is a holy day. Easter's Resurrection could happen only after the Crucifixion, and the cross is like a crossroads in our lives. Every one of us must stand at that crux, that point requiring resolution, and must choose which way to go. The decision we make is crucial -- the crisis of our lives is resolved by our turn toward either life or death. Jesus said, "Truly, Truly, I say to you, whoever hears my word and believes him who sent me has eternal life. He does not come into judgment, but he passed from death to life" (John 5:24).
We reveal to ourselves and others what is important to us by the way we celebrate. Is the season before Easter mainly a hassle to get to the mall and a strain on the budget purchasing clothes, candy, cards, and groceries for a big dinner? Or is it several days or weeks of considering God's work in our lives through Jesus, along with special activities to help us think about Jesus' death and resurrection?
Over the course of the Lenten and Easter season, we are remembering the lowest points of sin and the highest peaks of what God has done for us through Jesus. We have a way, the only way, to the Father through Jesus. That's worth celebrating!
Jesus said....I'm the way and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me" (John 14:6).
For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life. (John 3:16)
And yet every year somehow it's so easy for Easter to slip up on us, and suddenly we're saying, "Oh, my goodness, it's Palm Sunday already!" Let's think of some ways to be prepared, to be waiting for Easter.
If the children in your life are young, Lent may be too long a waiting time. In that case, the week that begins with Palm Sunday may be just long enough for anticipating Easter. At our house, we use a play dough mountain and chenille stick (pipe cleaner) people to depict what happened during the week. (*see instructions for mountain at the end of this article.)