Baby boy, it is your first Easter! A day filled with bunnies, Easter egg hunts, fancy church clothes and baskets of goodies. You will not really remember today because you are so little, but our day is a little different. No bunnies here, no hunts and we went to church last night and we are both still in our PJs. Daddy played bass this weekend at church (he’s really good at that bass thing) and so we went to Starbucks and Bojangles in our pajamas, perhaps a new Easter tradition for the two of us. I had the absolute JOY of putting your first Easter basket together! My parents always did this for us when I was growing up and it was so much fun making a basket for you. I got you two books, some Boogie Wipes (appropriate, since we both have a cold. Yuck.), gas drops and a motorcycle onesie. I bought a little basket because, let me tell you, I could have kept buying and buying and buying things for you… the struggle is real. My parents always said, “The Easter Bunny came!” but I don’t know yet if we’ll lie to you about that. Time will tell.
All the bunnies, eggs and baskets aside, Easter is a celebration of a bigger story. You see, the days leading up to the first Easter were so sad. This guy, Jesus, he had healed people. He had walked on water. He had performed miracles that only God could do. Lots of people were following him, believing him to be God’s son, the king that would reign on the earth over everything! The guy that was the king of the land at that time did not like this and he demanded that Jesus be killed. And so he was. For days the world was so sad because they had really believed that Jesus was gone. But something great happened! On the third day some women went to where Jesus had been buried and he wasn’t there. He was alive! For years and years and years it had been written that Jesus would do this, making us able to be with God again (keep reading.. some people named Adam and Eve kinda ruined that for us) making the first Easter the best. day. ever. So every year we celebrate this day, the day that Jesus beat death. Hooray!
I recently started understanding this better. You see, I borrowed a lot of money to go to college. When you borrow something it means you have to eventually give it back. The idea was that I would borrow money to graduate from college and then when I started working I would pay it back. I did not really realize that when I started working as a teacher I would also have other expenses, like a house or food or gas, or a baby… so it is taking lots of time to pay back all the money I borrowed. Your dad and I decided to pay it off as fast as possible so we got extra jobs. Before you were born I was waking up at 5am to work before I went to work, then I would work on the way home from work, eat dinner, and then work until I fell asleep at midnight. Mama was tired. I was also pretty sad. I didn’t get to spend time with your dad or any of my friends or other family members. I just worked all the time trying to earn my freedom from all that debt. It was exhausting, but I was focused on the day when we would make the last payment and we would be free!
So, back to Adam and Eve. They disobeyed God. He told them specifically not to do something and they big fat did it anyway. That began our separation from God. Because they didn’t do what they were told to do they were no longer allowed to live with God and neither were their children or their children’s children, or their children’s children’s children’s… etc, which means us. But then, Jesus came! Before Jesus people worked like I worked to pay off my debt. They tried to do the right thing, to be good people, and if they didn’t they had to make payments to God in the form of sacrifices. It was hard times. They constantly fell short and didn’t do things right which made them and God sad. So when Jesus died (and then promptly became not-dead!) he paid off all those bad things that people did. For the first time since Adam and Eve made a bad choice people could be with God again if they believed that Jesus died for them! What an awesome guy, huh? Can you believe he died for everybody! So every single person in the world could be with God again. Because of Jesus we don’t have to exhaust ourselves trying to be good enough for God. We just have to believe that Jesus was and that Jesus exclaimed that he was enough by his fancy shmancy stomping of death on Easter. Easter was that day that made us free from our sin. Jesus paid our balance in full that day, which means we are free!
So, you may be wondering how Easter became to be about bunnies and eggs. Your guess is as good as mine. One day when you are bigger (maybe next year!) we’ll decorate Easter eggs and dress all fancy for church, but in the meantime we will hang out in our PJs and enjoy our freedom. Love you little guy, happy Easter!