Not everything is different…

Easter looked different this year.

We still had the food, and the kids hunted eggs and even wore Easter outfits.

But family time existed of Zoom meetings and phone calls, and church was on TV while we sat in PJs eating cinnamon rolls and drinking coffee.

And by the evening, I was feeling the weight of it— of missing my family and friends, of traditions and events being upset, of spending the last month in complete uncertainty, of not knowing when this will end, of the empty shelves at the grocery store and face masks and death rates, and people fighting on the internet about whether the economy is more important than human lives, and is the government overreaching or not doing enough, and how I don’t really know what to think about any of it. And it was just so heavy.

We ended the day by joining a prayer vigil; people showed up in hospital parking lots across our Valley to pray and show support for our front line workers.

Together with my husband, mom, and kids, we thanked God for his faithfulness and goodness and we asked him to take this virus away. We asked for strength for all. We worshipped and remembered that he has always been good, and that even in this mess, he is bigger and working it all for His brand of good; a good that is so much better than anything we could ever plan for ourselves, it’s ridiculous really. And I needed to hear that from my family’s prayers and my own, and from the still, small whisper of the Spirit. I needed to remember that when things feel heavy, Jesus wants to take them from me because he can handle it.

Then, we honked and flashed our lights and basically acted like fools, hoping the warriors on the inside of the walls in front of us would hear and feel heartened. A whole bunch of them came to the front doors and waved and blew us kisses and bowed in thanks. It was such a sweet moment of connection and reminder that we really are all in this together.

This holiday likely looked a whole lot different for you than it has in the past. Maybe you didn’t get to see your usual crew, church was completely different or canceled altogether, maybe you spent the day alone. You may have anxiety over our current state of affairs or any number of other issues coming at you.

Take heart. Hope has a name. And even though it seems that everything around us is different, one thing remains and always will. Jesus. He is our hope and the resurrection. He breathes life into situations, into others, into us, even when we think nothing can be done. He’s faithful and good, even when Easter looks different. Because he’s the same. And he has overcome the world.

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