Beyond the Pulpit – April

Well. How things have changed. I hope you all are doing well. I miss you!

Over the past few weeks, our lives have changed drastically. In an instant – without warning – we suddenly were told to stay at home. We lost physical contact with others. We stopped going to school. We started limiting trips to the grocery and we stopped casual shopping. And the one that has hit me especially hard – we stopped going to the church on Sunday mornings.

There are some things that seminary just doesn’t prepare you for. Nowhere in any of my classes did we learn how to handle a pandemic. There wasn’t one time when an instructor said, “Now, when the time comes that you can’t go to the church building, when you’re told to shelter at home, this is what you do…” At no point in any pastor training, did we learn how to worship and serve during an epidemic.

And on top of it – IT’S EASTER!!

How do we do Easter when we can’t be together? We are supposed to be walking into the sanctuary showing off our new Easter dresses with our guys dressed to the nines with their suits and ties. Those of us with allergies should be loading up with allergy medication so we can survive the beautiful Easter flowers in the sanctuary. (Or maybe that’s just me. Haha!) We are supposed to be gearing up to sing Every Morning is Easter Morning!

But you know what? All those things we are “supposed” to be doing miss the point.

Easter isn’t about any of those things. It’s not about nice clothes, pretty flowers, or singing a particular song.

Easter is a Spirit – a Hope!

Easter isn’t just one day out of the year. Or at least it shouldn’t be. Every morning should truly be Easter morning. Every day should be a day that we remember, celebrate, and live for our Risen Savior!

The lyrics of the song Every Morning is Easter Morning is this: “Good-bye guilt, good-bye fear, good riddance! Hello, Lord, Hello, sun! I am one of the Easter People! My new life has begun! Daily news is so bad it seems the Good News seldom gets heard. Get it straight from the Easter People! God’s in charge spread the word! Yesterday I was bored and lonely; But today look and see! I belong to the Easter People! Life’s exciting to me!”

If ever we have needed to live out what we have sung for years, IT IS NOW! We are Easter People! We are filled with the Holy Spirit and serve Jesus Christ! And God will replace fear with hope.

What seminary did teach me, as well as the Bible we profess as truth, is that we are to love the Lord our God with all our heart, mind, soul, and body, and love our neighbors as ourselves. We are Easter People! It’s what we do.

And it’s what we should be doing even in the midst of a stay-at-home order. Just because we aren’t physically entering the sanctuary doesn’t mean we stop doing what Christ has called us to do. Now more than ever, look for ways to be Christ to others.

And on Easter morning, we will celebrate Christ like never before!

In Christ’s love, Pastor Kim