This year’s Easter sermon was harder than usual to write. Besides the normal self-imposed pressure to write the best sermon ever for the biggest church holiday of the year, I really had to examine the meaning of the resurrection again.
Does this happen to you, parents? There are some years when the major concepts of the Christian tradition make more sense than others. Last year I was enthralled with the Virgin birth at Christmas, but other years I have really not understood why we even bother talking about it. This year, the meaning of the resurrection has eluded me. It was a struggle all week to try to explain in a sermon what I could not engage in my spirit or intellect.
Commentaries failed me. Conversations with my study group frustrated me. I would catch a whiff of the resurrection, grab a pen to write down an idea, and *poof*. Just like that, the image or metaphor would escape me again.
I was beginning to get a little nervous about Sunday’s sermon.
Saturday afternoon, I snuggled up with my daughter for a long awaited movie together. While we were waiting for the movie to start, I thought I’d ask her about this concept that had been eluding me all week.
And, you know what? I learned some things about the resurrection! And these ideas made it possible to forge ahead on my sermon. But, more importantly, I learned about my child’s inner spiritual life. This child believes in “God is love.” She gets it in a way that I did not as a child. This notion comes easily to her, even as she acknowledges that bad things happen. “People die, mom, but God still cares about them, and God is still with them.”
This Easter season (a season which, by the way, lasts for 50 days—10 more days than Lent), I am challenged to ask my family a few important questions every day:
- What does resurrection mean?
- What does it look like?
- How do you live resurrection?
Perhaps the questions seem a little heady. They are. But my kids—aged 9 and 12—can handle them. And I bet yours can too.
Christ is Risen! What does that mean? Ask your kids—my guess is they’ll give you some pretty surprising and profound answers.
~Amy Yoder McGloughlin’s blog is Stories from the Red Tent.