Day 25: Cookies

On Sunday, I will celebrate my 29th Easter as a follower of Jesus. I can remember that first Easter as if it were yesterday. I wanted to experience every moment of it. I celebrated Palm Sunday and a traditional Maundy Thursday. On Friday, I gathered for a Good Friday mass and then a Holy Saturday service. By Easter morning I was emotionally wrung out like a wet rag. On Sunday, I sat in the pew in stillness and silence. I could not sing. I could not recite the words. Instead, it took all of my energy to sit in God’s presence.

So often we talk about the power of God and His presence as something that is demonstrative. It is big. It is bold. It is shiny. Like America. And, of course, it makes you cry. We really like when it makes us cry.

But Jesus says the Spirit is more like the wind. We do not see where it comes from and we do not know where it is going. We can only see its affects. However, those affects are not always monumental. It can be a gentle breeze. It does not need to knock down trees.

As I sat in the pew, I was overcome by what was not happening. There was a settling of my spirit. There was rest in his presence. There was peace beyond my ability to comprehend. And sometimes the church is so busy gyrating that we miss what God is doing.

Some of us will be gathering on Easter for the first time in a year. My congregation was in lock-down last Easter. It is tempting for us to rush in and try to gobble the experience like a two year old eating chocolate chip cookies. My children would do this as toddlers. They were so excited about the cookies that they would stuff them all at once into their mouths. I would tell them “no cramming” because I did not want them to choke.

It is possible that in our enthusiasm we could choke on the experience of Easter. Sometime before Sunday I commend you to take a deep breath and count to ten. Walk slowly and intentionally towards Resurrection Sunday and enjoy God’s presence. And may you experience it again as if for the first time.

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