People often talk about two types of personalities — rule-followers or rule breakers.
However, I tend to find myself caught between the two. I’m a nonconformist in many ways: I tend to find a lot of what’s considered “good etiquette” silly, and there are plenty of rules and laws that I think are ridiculous. And, admittedly, I tend to drive about 9 miles per hour over the speed limit.
But there are some things that seem black and white to me. For example, I never cheated in school — or allow others to cheat off on me — despite the peer pressure to do otherwise and the number of people who got upset with me. Cheating is wrong, period.
Easter as the Core of Our Faith
Similarly, I have pretty strong feelings about the observation of Easter.
In my opinion, Easter is the core of our faith, and it should be observed with reverence and awe. Bunnies, colored eggs and baskets full of gifts don’t fit into that equation.
So, our family simply doesn’t participate.
Well, I take that back. We do attend a family Easter egg hunt after church on Sunday, because I think those relationships trump my personal convictions. But within our family unit, we avoid them.
Of course, I love bunnies, bird nests and colored eggs as much as the next person, and I think they’re beautiful reminders of Spring and the birth of new life.
Balancing the Celebration of Spring & Easter
Am I telling you this to convince you to see things my way? Not at all! But if you’ve struggled with these same feelings and haven’t found a good way to balance the two, I want to share the approach we’ve come up with.
Depending on the timing of Easter, we spend a few weeks focused on Easter and a few weeks — before or after — on Spring.
- We dye eggs, just not Easter eggs.
- We eat Peeps, just not in Easter baskets.
- We do spring crafts, but not as part of our Easter celebration.
And during the weeks immediately before Easter, we focus on the true Easter story — the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ.
Our Plan for This Year
This year, we’re using the Telling God’s Story curriculum and doing a four-week unit on Easter: Palm Sunday, the trial of Jesus, Jesus’ crucifixion and the resurrection. We’re focusing on that story in the weeks leading up to Easter. And then in the weeks following that celebration, we’ll focus on Spring!
Last year, I also shared a new tradition that we’re looking forward to including in our celebration again this year:
At 3 p.m. on Good Friday, we’re going to turn out all of the lights as symbol of Christ’s death on the cross. We’re then going to use candles rather than electric lights until Easter morning, when we’ll turn on the lights to celebrate His resurrection.
This is not the only way to celebrate Easter, of course, just the one that feels right to me!
If Easter is a part of your faith, how do you balance the observation of it as a religious holiday with the fun aspects related to Spring?