As I took my morning walk, I marveled at the yellow jasmine beginning to bloom in the trees. During the winter their vines are almost invisible to passersby and then as spring begins, they burst forth in bright yellow demanding to be noticed. There is beauty in each season the Lord designed if we only look for it, but the vivid colors of spring seem to capture my attention most of all. As Christians do we observe seasons of worship and stress one over the other?
During my walk, I thought about the Christian year and the holidays we celebrate. Christmas and Easter are the main focus of our attention. We have the Advent season leading up to Christmas and the Lenten season preceding Easter. Both are designed to help us prepare ourselves spiritually for first, the birth of Christ and second, His resurrection. I thought of the number of people who flock to churches on Christmas Eve and the lesser number, in most churches, that appear on Easter Sunday.
We love the story of the Christ Child, born in Bethlehem, and destined to be our Savior. It is one of anticipation and longing. Each year we look forward to the retelling of His humble birth, witnessed to by the shepherds and wise men. God’s gift to us, His precious perfect Son, is cherished in our hearts and celebrated anew each December 25th.
Easter is the culmination of this gift’s purpose in our lives. We play a dark role in this holiday. We are part of the crowd calling for His crucifixion. Not many of us attend Good Friday services and Easter Sunday services are not as full as the ones on Christmas Eve. Is the cross to harsh for us to dwell upon?
It’s only as an adult that I have truly come to realize and appreciate all that Christ’s death on the cross means to us as believers. It needs to be our focus all year long and not just during Lent and Easter. Christ’s death is the beginning for us, a new birth, an entrance into life in eternity with our Heavenly Father. We should all be shouting “Hallelujah” and praising God to the utmost. He sent His One and Only Son to be sacrificed on the cross to pay our sin debt in full. What an awesome gift! It’s almost beyond comprehension. His love for us is boundless and His faithfulness is unequaled.
Christ on the cross needs to be in our hearts and minds all year long. This image is not to be thought of for a day or for a season but for the entire year. He gave His life so we could look forward to eternity in Heaven with our Father God. Eternity began for each of us that moment when we first accepted Christ as our Savior. He is a man for all seasons.