I was gobsmacked last Thursday when Sue and I ventured to the supermarket to do our weekly shop to be confronted by signs everywhere informing us that IT IS ALL ABOUT THE BUNNY!!
This was the Thursday before Good Friday and many people refer to this holy day as Maundy Thursday - the day Jesus was betrayed by Judas and the time of His impending torture and horrible death on the cross.
So you can imagine my surprise and disappointment to see these signs, especially when I know deep in my heart it has nothing at all to do with bunnies but with the grace, love and mercy of an all loving all embracing God.
So what is it about Easter and Christmas that make so many people go out of their way to exclude the real reasons for the seasons and substitute anything at all to turn attention away from the holiness of the occasions and spend all their energy and dollars on things that won't last.
Surprising as it may seem the word EASTER does not appear in most Bibles - I think in the American King James version it does mention Easter in Acts 12:14 but that apparently is a variation of the word pascha which actually refers to the Passover - the feast Jesus was having with His disciples in the upper room before his trip the Gethsemane.
Also the word EASTER can be traced back to the old Saxon goddess Eostur - not sure what she was supposed to have done but it is something my atheist friends love to throw up at me to prove that we as Christians are completely "off the mark" in worshiping Jesus' death and resurrection when it is obviously a pagan festival after all.
This old goddess may have been a fertility symbol to some hence the bunnies and eggs etc. Absolutely nothing whatsoever to do with the horrible and tortuous death of our Savior and Lord and what He went through for you and me.
All that aside I personally don't really care when or what particular day we set aside to worship and honour our Lord and consider exactly what He did for you and me on that horrendous day over two thousand years ago. The main argument for me is that WE DO celebrate, worship and praise our God for his great love shown to us through His grace.
Easter for me is a time when we can meditate on His word, reflect on His amazing love and actually rethink where we stand with the one who created us in His image.
Maybe for you it can be a time to rededicate your life to Him - have fun with the Easter eggs, and bunnies etc BUT above all else the MAIN point of all the Easter joy is a remembrance of Jesus and his mighty act of self-denial on that day way way back.
Of course resurrection day is the ultimate day for us to celebrate the life of our Lord - it was on this day that he rose triumphantly to knock death a fatal blow - this day above all others was THE day that Jesus secured for us a place with Him for eternity.
All we have to do is come to Him - confess our sins in humble repentance - ask Him to lead our lives and commit everything to Him. He did everything for us - all we have to do is to accept His gift of eternal life, free from the burden of sin.
So I say a HUGE thank you to Jesus for saving me and giving me a life where deep down, through whatever comes along, I know for certain that He will never leave me or forsake me as He has promised over and over again.
Take this life-changing step over this Easter break and dedicate your life to Him - come to Him right now where you are. He has promised that your life will never be the same again.