The Grinch, that green menace, is at it again. As Easter approaches, just look at his grin. It’s broad and it’s toothy and signals his plan to tempt all the children, each woman and man.
If he has his way on this Grand Sunday morn, they all will think chocolate is why they were born. And then after breakfast, for eggs they will search instead of deciding to dress up for church.
That emerald old tempter, so shrewd and so bold, is heartless, deceptive, conniving and cold.
“Forget about worship,” he protests. “How dull! Just eat Peeps and candy until you are full. Don’t bother with Jesus. Just go out to eat. The sermon is boring. The songs all repeat.
“The story is spooky. There’re corpses and caves and an unlikely outcome for gullible knaves. A dead man now living? How totally un. When death scores a victory, the Grim Reaper’s won. There aren’t second chances. Once dead, you are dead. All empty-tomb claimants have rocks in their heads.”
Oh really, Green Monster? You think it’s a ruse? Don’t bad mouth a mystery that’s really Good News. You see, Mr. Grinch, when you’re dealing with God, you can’t just dismiss what’s unlikely and odd.
The fact you can’t splain it does not mean it’s fake. I’d guess you are silenced by joy at a wake. But that doesn’t mean what you see is a fraud. The grievers are joyful because they know God.
They know they will see their dead loved one again and all because Jesus, once killed for our sin, reversed the magnetic-like pull of the grave as proof that his passion has power to save.
To save us from acting like we’re in control of our self-centered, self-righteous arrogant souls. To save us from guilt and regret’s residue that deadens our faith-buds like bad rabbit stew.
To save us from lusting for status and money and greed that breeds faster than prolific bunnies. To save us from those who insist there’s no room in a logical world for a lone empty tomb.
Just look all around you. The earth that was dead has left winter’s casket. It’s thriving instead.
Me thinks, Mr. Grinch, there’s a parable here. In old Mother Nature, it’s perfectly clear that what the church preaches each Easter as fact is not just a story. True life MUST come back.
Observe earth’s cathedral. Go on, take a peek. A grand celebration awaits those who seek. The tulips are trumpets. Hear budding trees sing. Be still for the preacher. His name? Well, it’s Spring.
So in this fresh season when new life is seen, beware of the tempter who’s furry and green. Don’t let him convince you that Easter’s ‘bout eggs or buffets of ham steak and little sheep’s legs.
Instead, buck the culture and alter your search. Try hunting for Jesus. Spend Easter at Church.
That was the Good News given to the women who visited the tomb that held the body of Jesus on the first day of the week following His crucifixion. That same Good News has inspired millions over the years, and gives hope to each and every one of us. We serve a God who loved us so much He sent His only Son to die a substitutionary death on the cross for our sins to restore fellowship between God and man.
As we celebrate this coming Resurrection Sunday, let us renew our commitments to Christ and in doing so pledge anew to live our lives as Walking, Talking, Living, Breathing Bibles. Remember, we may be the only Bible some people ever read, and let it not be said that the pages of our lives read by others did not point them to Jesus.
The Roman emperor Diocletian, following an edict in 303 A.D., failed to stamp the Bible out. The French Revolution could not crush it with secular philosophy (Rousseau, one of its heroes, converted to Christianity). The Communists failed to stamp it out with atheism and political ideology. One might well ask why this book has been banned, burned, and bludgeoned with such animosity and scorn. The great Reformation hero John Calvin responds in this way: "Whenever people slander God's word, they show they feel within its power, however unwillingly or reluctantly." - Joe Boot