It’s funny the things that come to mind when a holiday rolls around. This Sunday coming up will be about the 65th Easter I’ve celebrated. Before that I was too young to remember much. But by the time I was five I had my ear to the ground for all situations that may involve some gain in my direction.
Five – Didn’t get much as Mom and Dad didn’t have much to give, but I knew something was up when the word on the street – so to speak – was that a bunny would be visiting with goodies for me and my siblings. Jelly beans and chocolate things hidden in nests around the house. Before the shiny green stuff you find in bags now there was the kind made from green waxed paper shreds. I found some"vintage" on Etsy selling for $26. Yikes! Trouble is, dogs and cats really like it so when it passes – well – you can imagine hopping down that bunny trail!
Ten – This year stands out in my memory because Mom made me an Easter dress that year. She had a new sewing machine and put it to good use whipping up a creation made from taffeta. Remember taffeta? Little girls the world over loved to swish around in their pretty dresses made from it. Mine was pink and covered in tiny rosebuds and trimmed at the neckline with pink velveteen (why am I thinking of a rabbit just now?) Sending up a “thank you” Mom. I know it was an effort.
Fifteen – This was the first year I sang the Hallelujah Chorus in the church youth choir, The Chanceleers. Wow. What a way to inspire a teen. We attended a pretty big Lutheran Church in Southern California and there were about 20 – 25 kids in the choir when everybody showed up. We wore blue robes with white stoles and we rustled when we processed. What a thrill to belt out the beloved anthem as our dynamic director, Mr. Encheff, pumped his arms and brought the altos in one beat ahead of the rest at measure 45. It burns in my memory.
Adult - I have sung the Hallelujah Chorus many dozens of times since then. With every rendition the message that so inspired Handel sinks deeper. I grew up hearing about Jesus and what He has done for us. I learned as a child and have always believed that He was my only Savior and looking back over my many years I see how I’ve been loved, chastised and guided by His life and His death.
With both Christmas and Easter there are forces out there trying to hijack the true meaning of those days. It doesn’t bother me as much as it used to and I can claim the Easter Bunny for the little ones and Jesus for our greater lives. With the one there’s the gain of weight. With the other there’s the gain of Heaven. A good deal all around. God loves each plump believer.
If you celebrate Easter, I hope you have the best one ever this year. And in honor of Spring, I give you this.
Fiddlehead and Robin
By Susan Sundwall
A tiny curled up fiddlehead,
tucked ‘neath the melting snow,
awakened one fine morning
when a robin chirped “Hello!”
“It’s time to rise you sleepyhead!”
said Robin to the fiddlehead.
And then they both began to sing
to welcome God’s sun dappled spring.