Holy Sacred Commercialism

Easter, He is Risen, The Resurrection, Happy Easter

Image source: Old Farmer’s Almanac

I realize this week has been a week of deep reflection for me. At first, I thought my imbalance was a result of all the violence that has recently occurred over the past few days but I finally put my finger on what the real reason was. See, on Easter Sunday 14 years ago, my mother passed away. There was an emptiness I felt that day as many of us who lost a parent or someone extremely close to them experiences. When I got to the hospital, walked into my mother’s room and saw her lifeless body, I couldn’t begin to cry, not yet.

I felt her hands which were still warm. I told her I got there as fast as I could. It took me 3 hours to drive there, but it seemed like 8. When I began thinking about that day, how I commemorated the sacredness of Easter Sunday, because of the Resurrection of Jesus Christ, I felt a gnawing uneasiness in my spirit and I had no energy. In hindsight, I finally understood what my spirit was telling me.

Today is Maundy Thursday, the first of the three days of solemn remembrance leading up to Easter. Tomorrow is Good Friday, in which the Crucifixion of Jesus Christ is commemorated in the Christian Church and is traditionally a day of fasting and penance. Holy Saturday, also known as the Great Sabbath or Easter Eve is the final day of Holy Week.

Easter, which celebrates Jesus Christ’s resurrection from the dead, is one of Christianity’s most important holidays. I have often wondered, how did we creatively turn the sacredness of the holiday into extreme commercialism? How did we adopt icons like colored eggs and bunny rabbits to identify the meaning behind this celebration? Probably because Easter eggs and the Easter bunny are easier to accept than a religious symbol.

I am not here to judge, offend or become overly sanctimonious, but when I searched through images for Easter, I found that 99% of them were bunnies, eggs, green grass, baskets, bonnets, daisies and daffodils. Many of those who I speak to and who identify with Christianity, don’t have a problem with the commercial promotion of how this holiday is marketed and think we may need to steer away from religious representations so that others will not be offended or feel alienated. 

As I reflect on the emotions surrounding this all-important holiday for me, I find a peace within my spirit that surpasses all understanding and a gratitude that I can never explain, except to say “Thank You, God!” While my opinion of how I celebrate Easter may be significantly different from the way some others celebrate it, I enter the final leg of this Holy holiday and bid everyone a very Happy Easter! Now that makes me cry!

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Easter Memories

Celebrating Easter, Happy Easter, The Resurrection, Easter Sunday

Today we celebrate Easter. We all have memories of Easter in one way, shape or form. On this day, pen how you feel about Easter or how Easter has affected your life. Did you experience any life-changing events that leave you with indelible memories that will forever touch your heart?

I experienced a life-changing event that literally shattered my world 11 years ago today. It was Easter Sunday, April 20, 2003. I received a call from my sister that my mother was admitted to the hospital, due to labored breathing. When my brother-in-law called me later that evening of Easter, I found it odd that he called instead of my sister, and he told me I needed to come home. My heart sank and for the next 3 hours driving to the hospital, the road seemed to never end. I knew in my heart my mother was gone, although my brother-in-law didn’t say so, but I still kept a little bit of hope that she was still holding on. The drive seemed to go on for days, but my husband and I finally arrived to the hospital. When we got to my mother’s room, my sister, brother-in-law, my youngest brother, father and a member of my brother-in-law’s church surrounded my mother’s bed. I walked in and she looked like she was sleeping. I looked at my sister and asked, “She’s not gone is she?” My sister nodded yes and everything after that seemed like a blur to me.

The days after were no easier as we made final preparations for her funeral. Although it’s been 11 years, the pain does not hurt as bad as it initially did, but that void is forever there and at times uncontrollable crying has its moments. If it wasn’t for my constant writing, I think I would have probably spent tons of money on professional help. I cried my way through the keys of my computer when I wrote about my mom and what made my writing more special was when the editors from “Chicken Soup for the Soul: Thanks Mom” sent me an acceptance letter that my story about my mother was going to be included in that volume. You can’t imagine how honored and proud I was. I dedicated an elegy to my mother that was part of my collection of poems in my book “Wings of the Wind: A Cornucopia of Poetry.” Through it all, you do get through it, although you never get over a loss.

I found, as I am sure you probably have, that writing is a therapeutic tool when you are dealing with some type of challenge in your life. It may not be a published piece, but it can certainly be a catalyst of hope, inspiration and strength to help you through whatever it is you are going through.

If you’ve been putting off a journaling project or writing project, jump to it. Observe the things that happen around you today and simply begin writing. Don’t worry about editing, just begin writing your thoughts and emotions down on paper. You can’t imagine how therapeutic it is and how much better you will feel.

Happy Easter!

Thanks for stopping by!

Enjoy Easter!

Celebrating Easter From Behind the Pen

HAPPY EASTER!

Today day is Easter and this is truly a celebration that is masterfully documented in the Bible. We hear the story about Jesus’ Resurrection during this time of the year and if it wasn’t for those who wrote and documented what happened at that time in history, we would not be able to grasp the events that occurred well over 2,000 years ago. Those events affects every person’s life, whether we want to acknowledge it or not.

However you decide to celebrate this day, my wish is that you will have a safe and joyous Easter!

Happy Easter!

Celebrating Resurrection Day!

Today we celebrate an occasion that is very significant in Christianity. It is not about an Easter bonnet, or an Easter egg or an Easter bunny. It’s not about how many people will fill the sanctuaries of churches everywhere for the one and only time during the year or the colorful new outfits that people are adorning themselves in.

Today, we remember the significance of a sacrifice that was made for all of us over 2,000 years ago, whether or not many people want to acknowledge it or believe in it. This Holy Week included the events that occurred centuries ago on Maundy Thursday, Good Friday, Holy Saturday and finally on Easter, that began with the observance of Lent, which lasted 40 days. Many people engaged in giving something up, whether it was food, a habit or donating their time.

We look on this day, as we try to every day, to be the people God needs for us to be and to perform the mission that God needs for us to do. We must keep in mind that what we do, is in remembrance of who Jesus Christ is and the reason for his 33-year mission.  May you and your family have a joyous and Happy Easter today!

Celebrating Easter, A Holy Day!

Celebrating Easter!

As we approach Easter, let us not forget about the true meaning of what Easter signifies. It is not about the Easter eggs, the Easter Bunny, Easter baskets, Easter outfits or simply going to church on Easter Sunday. Easter is about the Almighty sacrifice that Jesus Christ gave for us, His Resurrection and God’s divine forgiveness of our sins. All too often, we become entrapped by the commercialism of what our holidays are supposed to really mean and the true message gets lost in the shuffle somehow.

For those of us who gave up something during the Lenten Season, let us continue to carry that spirit of prayer, atonement, fasting, and self-denial throughout the year. Let us not try to neatly fit these all important, life-changing times of reflection and celebration into a convenient package that we tuck away until this time next year rolls around. I cannot say often enough how we are truly blessed to be in a country where we can freely practice our religion, our political views and a myriad of other liberties without deadly persecution. We must not take these areas of independence for granted because things can change when we least expect it. We do not live in a land where dictatorship governs every fabric of our lives. We must rejoice in that fact.

As we commemorate the festivities of this Easter, may we continue to reflect on keeping it a Holy Day instead of just another commercialized holiday. Peace & Blessings everyone!