With all the commercialization of traditional American events and the fear of offending someone with your words, what image comes to mind when you hear the word Easter? Think about this for a moment. What about your children and family? This article promises to be a bit different than what I typically write. Let me apologize in the beginning if it is not as warm and fuzzy as one might hope for or expect. Indecently, some of the earliest traces of the Easter egg date back to when they were dyed red to represent the blood of Christ and were a symbol of resurrection just as the cross used to crucify Christ was a sacrificial implement.
So many important parts of Christian celebrations and life changing events have become so commercialized that many feel a need to apologize if they are not going to communicate about it in the commercial sense. For many of us when we hear the word Easter images of a bloody Christ hanging from a cross come to mind. The death and resurrection of Christ celebrated with observance of Holy Week, Maundy Thursday – Last Supper, Good Friday, and Sunrise Services are more traditional and often forgotten much less celebrated or observed by today’s younger society.
Easter for some denotes that Sunday you dress in your finest to go to church. Although it often started as a sign of respect (to dress in your finest) it has become more commercialized because for some it is one of the two times a year they chose to go to church. The marketing of the “Easter Outfit” for children is almost un-American to ignore or the family photo that follows. Don’t get me wrong, I am not knocking all of this. It isn’t wrong, but it might not be the best way for our families to understand the value of a daily relationship with Christ.
For our family the cross is the daily reminder of the Easter celebration. It isn’t just a decoration that hangs near our dinner table on a wall where my parents would have hung a picture of “The Last Supper” in their home. It hangs as a gentle reminder of His last supper, His forecasts on what would happen, and how His own people would turn on Him under the pressure of others. It is our daily reminder of His sacrifice. We wouldn’t dream of keeping Easter eggs out year round.
The cross can be a symbol to keep Easter season ever present on your mind. Daily thanks for the sacrifice made and the celebration of death and resurrection. The promise of a future is what it represents to many people. Don’t get me wrong the cross has also been commercialized. It can be beautiful jewels, decoration, picture frames, almost anything you can imagine that is far from a sacrificial symbol. This is where you make choices about how you will communicate about this precious time. How will you impart the importance of Easter to your loved ones, neighbors, co-workers, and friends?
I am certainly no saint, nor do I profess to know it all when it comes to raising a family or influencing others. I do however; find it important to remind myself and our family of what the season of Easter really represents. Therefore, those crosses hang on the wall and they are a constant reminder that Easter is not just a season, but a sacrifice made that we benefit from everyday not once a year. The simple fact that we realize we are not perfect and we want to improve is a step in the direction to be more Christ like. Those who lead others to believe they have some sort of perfection because they are a “believer” is an imperfection in itself. No one is more forgiven than another. Thankfully for all there is only one who is perfect and He is not back to claim us yet.
We all still have time to share the gift of Easter, to share the “bloody truth” about the cross, to be the friendly face to the visitor on any given Sunday, not just the busiest of the year. Just listen. It is about listening to that soft voice inside that guides you to speak, share, and love with open arms and not closed arms with a heart that judges. This Easter when you celebrate, reflect, and share. Will it be the cross or the eggs that you think of first?
JoAn Majors is a professional speaker and published author. Her articles have appeared in over 25 magazines and newsletters. She is a member of the National Speakers Association, Global Speak-ers Network, and International Speakers Network. She also assists in the marketing of her husband’s Bryan/College Station dental practice, MajorSmiles.com. JoAn is happiest being mom, nanny, sister, or honey to her family. To learn more about having her speak to your group visit joanmajors.com or call 866.51.CHOICE. The Time is Now, The Choice is Yours! (JoAn gives back equivalent to 20 percent of her total in speaking fees per year in gratis work for local groups.)
To see more from Peace Magazine read our Easter 2016 digital issue