Business as usual not an option
What will you do to honor Jesus this Easter? Let’s be creative and look past traditional habits and token self-denials. Are there other practical answers to that question? Unfortunately, many people who answer to the label as Christians will do little or nothing to honor Jesus this Easter! No one could guess from their Holy Week activities that they were a Christian at all. That’s not the way it should be.
Honor Jesus with action
During Holy Week true Christians remember the suffering of Jesus including his death on the cross. Easter is the highest point of the church year, the time when we remember Jesus’ climactic victory over death. Above all times, this is when Christians should be most active in celebrating their Savior. And our celebration should not just be with words. Words alone cannot honor one who taught us to put his sayings into action (Matthew 7:24-27). But not everyone will want to honor Jesus in exactly the same way. So here are five suggestions all of which will help us truly honor Jesus this Easter.
- Give a gift of your time and love to help someone in need. This could range from random acts of kindness to strangers to volunteering at a nursing facility to visiting a disabled friend to doing outdoor work for an elderly neighbor to… The more in-person the gift, the better for this one. Jesus was always helping someone in need. He told us he came to serve others and urged us to do the same (Matt. 20:25-28).
- Give a gift of money to a cause that helps those who are among people who the OT would include among the “oppressed.” Such causes include aid to those suffering from natural disasters, aid to refugees, aid for victims of racial injustice, groups working against systemic poverty, food banks, etc. If we are not willing to acknowledge God’s gifts to us and give of our finances to others, we have not yet caught the Spirit of Jesus.
- Worship at church during Holy week. First of all, Jesus deserves to be honored by our presence in services in his honor. Second, it is the upward look that sustains our outward focus and dims our self-centeredness. At Copper Hill there are three opportunities from Palm Sunday through Easter.
- Speak to someone about your faith in Jesus. This conversation could be a short personal anecdote describing some way that your faith has helped you. It could be an invitation to a friend to attend a service with you. It could be an offer to pray for someone who is going through a tough time and would appreciate a prayer. There’s no better time than Easter time to make Jesus a positive part of our conversation.
- Read the story of Jesus’ last days again (Matthew 26-28 and/or John 13-20) or watch a video of it such as the Jesus Film with a friend. It is the most watched film in history and was digitally remastered for HD with a new sound track in 2014 http://www.jesusfilmstore.com/35th-Anniversary-JESUS-Film-Blu-Ray-Disc/productinfo/ZBRD-35TH-BLU-RAY/. The original version is available on NETFLIX.