New Perspectives: Easter Renewal by Rev. Heather McCarrel

Easter Sunday is here!  This is the day we pause in the midst of all life holds and acknowledge the power of our great Creator to “do a new thing”.  It isn’t about knowing.  It is about faith.  We don’t know what “new thing” God is about to do but we have faith it will be good. Like the women who arrived to an empty tomb, we too acknowledge the wonder, confusion and even the trepidation that goes along with God’s “new thing”.

If I have learned anything as a Country Preacher it is that country folks know better than most how to trust in God’s “new thing”.  As the muddy days of early spring turn into days of productivity the almost barren fields turn to shades of green as neatly planted rows of seeds bud.  The once barren trees begin to fill with tiny leaves and the mucky ditches are transformed by colourful spring flowers.  Yes, this “new thing” God is up to becomes evident with each new day.

We gathered on Good Friday to witness the uncomfortable funeral of our Saviour.  We sang the hymns ‘The Old Rugged Cross’ and ‘Were You There?’ before snuffing out the Christ Candle and leaving the sanctuary in silence.  Today, we return in a jubilant mood!

Easter Sunday has always been a cause for celebration!  Extra decorations are placed in the sanctuary, the black cloth on the cross is replaced by white and folks arrive with an extra spring to their step and a joyful ring to their singing.

This Easter we will add a new decoration to our sanctuary; two Ukrainian blown Easter Eggs.  At one church I served, there was a member who came from a Ukrainian family and he had the gift of creating these beautiful eggs. Over the years that I served in his church he gifted me twice with these priceless masterpieces. They have a special place in my china cabinet, but this year, in honour of our prayers and concerns for the Ukraine people, they will be placed on the Communion Table.  May they be a reminder of those who are displaced and in great need of “God’s New Thing”.

We gathered at sunrise on the shores of Georgian Bay at the base of a cross and together, with the waves and birds, sang of God’s newness. Later in the morning, we gathered again in a stain glassed sanctuary ready to lift the roof with the traditional hymn, “Jesus Christ Is Risen Today”!

May the renewal of life at Easter bring new blessings of love, hope, peace, happiness and good health to everyone!