Over the last few years I have led a children’s service in church on Good Friday, walking around the church to look at the Stations of the Cross and discuss the meaning of the pictures. The idea being that we are following the final journey that Jesus took to his death on the Cross.
It always amazes me how perceptive and reverent children can be. Sometimes we dismiss children as being too young to be spiritual. Many children are actually far more spiritual than some adults, simply because they haven’t lost the sense of awe and wonder from their lives and they happily ask questions as they think of them. How often do we adults prefer to keep quiet rather than appear stupid?
Growing in spirituality is all about reflecting upon our relationship with God, each other and the natural world. Then asking the questions which should help us grow in understanding. No-one knows all the answers although reading the Bible might help.
At the end of the Good Friday service I always ask ‘What happens on Sunday?’ Normally the answer is either ‘Easter Bunny comes’ or ‘We get Easter eggs.’ Last year one five year old boy answered ‘We remember that Jesus rose from the dead’ said with an expression which suggested that I was a complete idiot for not knowing!
The Easter story can be quite difficult to explain or understand. In many ways it is beyond our comprehension to understand what Mary and the disciples first experienced when they met the risen lord.
I am greatly encouraged by doubting Thomas in St John’s gospel who refused to believe until he had seen Jesus for himself. When Thomas did meet Jesus he simply said “My Lord and My God”. Possibly our first creed.
The writer of St John’s gospel then states about the resurrection stories “But these are written that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ the Son of God and that by believing you may have life in His name”.
Easter is not the ending of the story but the start of God’s new creation as foretold throughout the Old Testament. We all are a living part of that new creation and it is our own personal choice how we respond to God’s love.
Again this year we will be remembering that Jesus died for each one of us and celebrating his resurrection on Easter Sunday. You are all welcome to come and join us and hopefully ask the awkward questions.
May you all have a most Blessed Easter.
(This article by Sheila was originally published as part of St David’s Messenger in April 2014)