Easter is, for believers, the greatest holiday of them all. Because of Easter, there is hope beyond the grave, the certainty of forgiveness today, and the great reality of being a part of God’s family. There is meaning and purpose, there is a reason for living. Because of Easter we can live with the certainty that for those who love the Lord, the best is always yet to be!
HOW DO WE HONOR GOD AND CELEBRATE THE GIFT OF EASTER?
We begin on Holy Thursday. There will be a traditional Seder meal at 6:00 p.m. This is not just a regular dinner, it is a ritual meal which has six specific food items and involves retelling the story of the Israelite Exodus.
At 7:00 p.m. we have our Holy Thursday service. The centerpiece is our celebration of the Lord’s Supper, but we will also have great songs about the death of Jesus on the cross, and the title of the devotion is The Wickedest Man of All Time. Some think the wickedest man was John Christie. What do I mean? Come and see!
On Good Friday Sunnyvale Christian School has a Good Friday service that is packed with students and their parents.
Easter Saturday will feature our community Easter Egg Hunt! The Hunt begins at 10:00 a.m. at Washington Park. Please come with your kids and grandkids and invite others! It will be quite an event, and I promise the kids will love it. See if you can’t make a new friend or two at The Hunt.
For a complete description of The Hunt and how you can help, please see the article after this letter.
Then this Sunday is EASTER! Our Resurrection Day celebrations will be full of hope and joy. Please come early and invite friends and family to join you! Our Easter music will inspire you and our Easter message will challenge you. The message is called, “The Great Crossing.” We will look at the various passages, or crossings, of life. Then we will talk about the last crossing. But here’s a shock: the last crossing isn’t the greatest crossing!
On Easter you can attend with family and friends to discover the greatest crossing of them all. And here’s a hint, this crossing is filled, not with dread, but with GLADNESS.
The Community Hunt is going to be a different type of event this year. Every year, we seek to improve communication and further our impact into the community. While the egg hunt is a big deal, it will also be over within 15 minutes. Our goal is to mingle and linger with our neighbors and friends around us who may or may not know Jesus. Jesus’ model of ministry was to invest relationally into others. There are a couple ways we could do that at this year’s event:
- We could join in as a volunteer for the different facets of the day. We will be hiding eggs for preschool and elementary along with bubble soccer, jump houses, and bible candy stations for children and their families, and for people of all ages.
- We could simply be there with our ministry of presence. The opportunity to connect with new friends doing activities together is a great way to do ministry and meet people. The tasks are easy, but the relational work of having a conversation and establishing a connection with others, albeit with just a smile, a handshake, or a deep long walk along the grass, that takes work for us to engage with others beyond those we are comfortable with. You could also ask a friend or a neighbor to volunteer as well.
Serving together brings us to contribute to something or someone that is greater than ourselves. It helps us to be less selfish and is a more comfortable way to relate rather than simply having a conversation. There are always things to do for able hands. We are all called to be part of God’s work, whether it is big, small, noticed, or unnoticed.
That is it really. We don’t have many opportunities as a church community to actively be a light unto the world. It’s not everyday where we can say that we are part of an event that is not to further our own goals, but to benefit our neighbors. A great first step and impression that our neighbors may see about us, is simply that we do this for God’s glory and the benefit of ALL people. Whether they respond or not, is not our concern. We are responsible for planting seeds and being an extension of God’s presence, not the result. However, I will say this: God does promise that His Word, as it goes out, in Word and Deed will not return void. Whether that change is in the community, or in us, that is the goal of serving the Lord, for the benefit of ourselves in God, and also the benefit of others as God works in us and through us! Happy Easter. He not only died for us, but He also gives us life, a life not our own any longer, but Christ living in us and through us.