I loved celebrating Easter together on Sunday.
After having to watch online last year, attending Easter service in person made it feel even more special. Whether you’re among the few who have been coming in person for a while now, just returned to church for the first time in a year, or joined us online and noticed how full the sanctuary looked on your screen, I think we all felt the hope and excitement of church feeling almost normal again.
I didn’t realize how much I missed corporate worship in a “full” – but socially distanced – sanctuary until I heard so many voices around me – worshipping together is a beautiful sound.
But, for me, something else that made this Easter feel more like a celebration than in past years was the preparation leading up to that special day.
Spending the weeks leading up to Easter leaning into the hard, the uncomfortable, the sin we don’t want to deal with, the agony and pain of the crucifixion that we don’t like to think about. Hearing the last words Jesus uttered from the cross, sitting with the darkness during the service on Good Friday – that’s what made the excitement, joy, and hope that much more of a celebration on Easter morning!
As we closed the beautiful Easter service in worship, I looked a few rows in front of me. A little girl in her pink Easter dress was raising her hands as she watched the worship leaders do on stage, she was dancing in the isle along to the music.
Watching her dance felt like a reflection of the joy in my own heart that Easter morning.
That little girl probably didn’t even fully understand what she was celebrating. But my hope is that our hearts adopt her posture of dancing in the isle, instead of waking up the Monday after Easter completely forgetting what we celebrated one day before.
And our hearts should be so full of joy that we can’t help but dance.
Because, if Jesus really rose from the dead, life is this big, expansive, purposeful, eternal experience. The resurrection that took place on Easter morning isn’t a promise for one day, but for every day!
It changed everything for us.
I found myself hanging on to every word of Jonathan’s Easter sermon. He closed with the reminder that, “Because He is risen, Jesus proved that God is as totally trustworthy as He always said He is.”
We can trust His plan to bring life out of death.
We can trust Jesus with everything we have. Because resurrection is coming.
I don’t know about you, but I’d say that’s a pretty good reason to dance in the isle.