The celebration of Jesus’ resurrection is the centerpoint of the Christian year; the response of God to the sacrifice of Jesus that neither sin nor its effects have the last word in God’s creation and purposes.
In our congregation, many of the decorations and color are removed from the sanctuary in the season of Lent; a reminder of the effects of sin on our lives. We are invited to take an honest look at our lives, to consider what it means to follow Jesus as a disciple, to follow in Jesus’ footsteps.
Color returns on Palm Sunday, as we join with the crowds who so long ago waved branches and laid their coats on the ground to honor Jesus, riding toward Jerusalem as a king, the fulfillment of Zechariah’s prophesy. The shouts of ‘Hosanna!’, literally ‘Save us!’ embody the hope we place in God as our salvation. Yet the service is tinged with irony, as the realization that our hopes and expectations can become a subtle trap, when we want God to do things our way and in our time. We remember how these same crowds turned against Jesus, or fled, when things didn’t go the way they thought it should.
In this week before the celebration of the Resurrection, when color and life blaze throughout the sanctuary to proclaim the power of God who raised Jesus from the dead; let us take time to remember how the Resurrection has meaning precisely because of the Cross.
Some ways to prepare for Easter include:
reading through the scriptures of Holy Week in the Gospels (Here’s a place to start)
Attending a Maundy Thursday service (ours is at 6:30 this Thursday at Memorial Baptist)
Observing Good Friday (The Fond du Lac ecumenical service will also be at Memorial Baptist at noon)
or just spending some time on Saturday to reflect on how often our experience is waiting for God to work – yet remembering that this waiting will turn to joy.
Blessings in the season,