Your Spirit

Holiday or Holy Day

Candy blogs: I am grateful for time to ponder. I don’t really HAVE the time but I MAKE the time. It helps me live more intentionally. I’ve been pondering another Easter season. Time to make graham cracker cake for ‘the kids’ … time to sing some of my favorite Easter songs … time to wear my new Easter outfit … time to celebrate spring. A happy yes, to all of these. But like other holy days, the holiness of Easter seems to have been made into just another holiday. I wanted to ponder the holiness part and not get too caught up in the holiday part.

One of my favorite Easter hymns is Christ Arose. As a child I loved the change in tempo and dynamics of this song. I still do. It tells both sides of the story … the dark, bloody, violent, gory side and the triumphant, radiant, joyful, miraculous side.

Low in the grave He lay, Jesus my Savior
Vainly they watch His bed, Jesus my Savior
Vainly they seal the dead, Jesus my Lord

Photo: Sami Sarkis / Getty Images
There is nothing winsome about the cruel and bloody crucifiction of our Lord Jesus. I want to avert my eyes. I want to skip directly to the resurrection, the winsome part. I already know this story! Please don’t remind me of the pain and horror. But without the cross, I am eternally lost. I have no hope, no purpose, no reason for being. The ugliness of the cross reminds me again of the ugliness of my sin and how I could never be good enough to pay the penalty for it. It would require my death. But my Jesus paid the penalty for me by his gory death. He looked down through time and saw my need of Him. He died for me.

Another song comes to mind. As a teenager I used to sing it as a special.

JUST TO THINK OF THE CROSS

Long ago in a far away place
Rough rugged timbers were raised to the sky
There hung a man suspended in space
And though He was blameless
They left Him to die

Just to think of the cross
Moves me now
The nails in His hands
His bleeding brow
To think of the cross
Moves me now
It should have been me, it should have been me
Instead I am free, I am free!

… and another song Scott and I used to sing at Easter

And the hammer fell, on a wooden nail
Through his flesh into the tree and they laughed at him
As he cried for them
And there he hung, the faultless one

And didn’t he live, oh, didn’t he
But didn’t he die, for you and me

But here is the REST of the story! The glorious, joyful, radiant, miraculous story, as told in my favorite songs!

Hymn …
Death cannot keep its Prey, Jesus my Savior;
He tore the bars away, Jesus my Lord!

Up from the grave He arose,
With a mighty triumph o’er His foes,
He arose a Victor from the dark domain,
And He lives forever, with His saints to reign.
He arose! He arose!
Hallelujah! Christ arose!

Just to think of the Cross …
He put an end to my guilt and despair
Turned bitter hating to sweet peace and love
Even the men that put Him up there
Were offered forgiveness and life from above

It should have been me, it should have been me
Instead I am free, I am free!

Didn’t He …
Bugler, blow your horn! Now the curtain’s torn
And the battle’s won, I know
The victory’s come
Drummer, drum your drum

Now doesn’t he live, oh, doesn’t he
Now doesn’t he give, oh, doesn’t he

But didn’t he die … for you and me?

I encourage you to ponder this holy season, this holy week, this holy day. I encourage you to DO something to celebrate this holiest of days, even if your friends or family balk and roll their eyes and seemingly only tolerate your meaningful intentions. Perhaps you’re the one to be God’s mouthpiece to share what has come out of your pondering.

He is Risen! He is Risen Indeed!

1 thought on “Holiday or Holy Day”

  1. Thank you Candy, for the reminder to keep the day Holy. As a mother with young children, it has been a challenge to not let the holiday side of it, overtake the Holiness of His Ressurection!

    Morning Has Broken, just might be my favorite Easter Hymn.

    Rejoice! He has risen!
    Blessings,
    Sheila

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