“Easter is canceled this year!” my youngest sister said.
As we watched the president's announcement to “Stop the spread for 30 days” all of us slumped into our family couch.
Since March 17, I have had the privilege of working at home, only seen two other people outside of my family, and not left my house but once. And believe it or not, it's gotten to be a little tiring.
Before all of this, I had bought an Easter dress, was looking forward to Easter worship, and had been dreaming about lunch with my loved ones. But, thanks to COVID-19 and the President's new guidelines, my dreams were shattered. Sitting on my couch, even I started to ponder my sister's statement.
Is Easter canceled?
No one in my family has missed an Easter Sunday service, and due to our faulty WiFi out in the middle of nowhere, we won't even be able to stream a service. This is heartbreaking to me and so many others.
Is Easter canceled?
The answer is: yes and no.
Like many of you, our long term traditions are canceled. There will be no Easter dress, family get-togethers, coconut cake, or egg hunts with kiddos.
But no, because as much as Satan would love to “cancel” this day, the tomb is still empty, and the Lord is still on the throne. The only way Easter could be canceled is if what had happened on Golgotha was undone.
Can you imagine?
What if when the women went to the Tomb there was a body? Easter canceled.
What if Jesus had changed His mind in Gethsemane? Goodbye Easter.
What if the cross on Golgotha's hill was empty? Bam. No hope, not even a little bit.
If Jesus told His Father “no” when He was asked to come down and save a filthy world from sins, then Easter would have been canceled. And that is a terrifying thought, to say the least. If it were the truth, we would be hopelessly on our way to hell, not scrounging around for a new dress.
Easter is not canceled. Easter is going to be spent with your family (possibly in your pajamas). There may not be a big band singing praise and worship songs, or a pastor in front of you, but if you have the Word, you and your family have an opportunity to read what He has given us right from the people who witnessed them.
Take that, Satan.
It's easier to think about churches being empty than a tomb still full. We will miss our church, family, and traditions, but instead of focusing on what we don't have this season, look at what we do have. An exciting opportunity to worship with those you love the most as you celebrate the tomb is still empty! Christ has risen indeed! COVID-19 can take away a lot of things, but not the fact that the tomb is forever empty.
“Don’t be alarmed,” he said. “You are looking for Jesus the Nazarene, who was crucified. He has risen! He is not here. See the place where they laid him," Mark 16:6.