Reading time: two minutes. Christ Is Risen! That’s reason to shout and sing. For all the pastors reading this, I want you to know that I have been praying for your Easter celebration, hoping that you would be not just a worship leader, but a worshipper. I remember an interview with Jim Bakker after he was jailed for the PTL scandal of the 1980’s. When asked, “What happened?” he replied, “We were so busy doing the Lord’s work, we forgot about the Lord.” I guess that’s an occupational hazard any time of year, but it’s especially dangerous in our busiest time. Let me throw out a few suggestions for your Post-Easter-Recovery-Regrouping time in this week after the great celebration you helped lead. As a father of a married daughter, I love the movie, “Father of the Bride.” In the opening scene (of both the Spencer Tracy and the Steve Martin versions) the dad is found in an easy chair in his now empty home, surrounded by the mess of the wedding reception, with a smile on his face, as he shares his reflections of the madness that led up to the big day, but the joy in his heart now that it was over. I hope you know a little bit of that peace and joy this week. For your Post-Easter reflection, try one or more of these suggestions:
- Which is your favorite Easter hymn? Open your hymnal and quietly spend some time there, remembering the music, meditating on the message of hope and joy. Let the hymn writer by your preacher.
- Revisit your six week Lenten journey. Were you there when they crucified the Lord? Yes you were. He gave Himself for you.
- Take another look at the Easter Gospel reading, not as sermon preparation, but as a message just for you from your risen Savior. Were you there? Yes, you were! He rose for you!
- As you look back, was your leadership, preaching, worship planning perfect? Did you reach everyone you had hoped? Did you keep every commitment? Of course not. Now be gracious to yourself, just as the Lord is. Thank Him that His mercy and grace covers all. Hear His own absolution. Know the JOY of Easter that is the fruit of His Spirit.
- And move forward into the next part of your faith journey, remembering that we are Easter people in every season of the year and every season of life.