Every year I find myself in the position of having to perform an internet search for when the shifting dates of Easter have moved to now. Unlike Christmas, which is easy, I never know where these Easter dates are going to land. Jesus’ beginning, fixed in time, occurs on the same day year in year out - and with that our lives are set to the pace of this unmoving ritual. But his death and resurrection are a series of moveable feasts. They refuse simple placement and simple responses. Little imagination is required in response to seeing a stable scene, or nativity play. We know how to feel when humble images of His birth meet our gaze because near-all of us know the joy felt when someone we know has given birth. It’s an emotion with a precedent. But how many of us can relate to someone dying for us?
During Easter we give symbols, tokens and gifts as reminders that Jesus’ death happened for us, but what it all entails can never be wholly contained in chocolate or palm fronds. It’s incomprehensible in its imbalance, that the Son of God would sacrifice his Godliness for crooked us. That thought itself can take more than a lifetime to fully realise. Trying to sum up an “appropriate” response to someone giving away their life is impossible. Any appreciation is destined to be an appreciation that changes, renews, and shifts with each passing day.
This year Palm Sunday falls on Sunday the 25th of March. Next year will be different, as will the coming Palm Sundays for many years to come; always the week before Easter Sunday, but always changing from year to year. But, as the annual ritual of Google-ing the changing dates of Easter goes on, try setting aside a moment to reflect on how your own responses to the season have changed as well.
February 1st, 2018 - Posted & Written by Aaron Lewendon