A day of sunshine in the midst of so many rainy ones. A quiet start, before the sunrise, worshiping my risen Lord. Words of promise, ribbons of hope, bolstering of joy. Alone with my Savior; loved, filled, revived and fulfilled. Prayers spoken, heart written out.
Joyful good mornings, with baskets to find and scones to fill with fresh made maple butter – the empty tomb, when butter mets way. Giggling children, chocolate smudged faces. Peaceful laughter turned to ruckus play while mommy and daddy cook away.
Daughter slips quietly into the kitchen, picks up the knife and the veggie and goes to work, happily helping along side me. Daddy scoops up toddler and trundles him off for a snooze. Son works contentedly on secret projects. The house filling with delicious smells.
Today is special in many ways. The conquering of death, for one. The penalty paid, and price freely given. And today, my children publicly declare their love and surrender to Him who died in their place. My daughter and I tuck ourselves into the bathroom before the grandparents arrive for our meal. She and I, we need to prepare.
Our faces smothered in a mask and hair pulled back, she giggles and nervously asks what will be expected of her. I ask if she is having second thoughts, “Oh, no! I just wonder if every one will be watching me,” she asks. We chat. She asks to go and play, her face now glowing, her hair all curled at the ends.
Grandparents are a treasure. At least, mine are. When they arrive we bustle and hug and laugh and fix up the meal. They joke and tease and cut food with ease. This time, a gift growing rare, a fortune to which none can compare. My grandparents here in my home now, when so many an Easter was spent at their table, when plate got shoved away from the edge, and we all clamored to help clear the dishes at the end. Being Grandma’s helper was the prized role. How grateful I am that they are here to share this day with us, one more year. I pray for many more to come.
And off we go, all tucked and pinned and pressed and fresh, filled to brim and excited. Each week we look forward to this time of worship, but today, Easter Sunday, today my children are taking a step toward being grown. Publicly declaring their hearts’ allegiance. Declaring it all on their own.
We sing and we praise, and we fill ears with words that nourish, cleanse, light up dark inner spaces. Then all gathered round the water, kids laughing, everyone clapping. Let every curse be broken and blessing be released and under the water you go, portraying your death. And up you come, risen anew – clean and made whole, declared and claimed. Death defied, conquered, no longer that wich has any claim.
My toddler claps wildly and laughs joyously and hugs my neck tight. “What are they doing mama?” Being baptized I answer. “Getting wet?” He wants to know. Yes, I tell him, in awe of his innocent face. “Getting wet in that water?” He confirms with me. Yes, I affirm, getting baptized in that water. “My turn?” He wants to know. “My turn be water-tized?”
Yes, son, yes! When the day comes that it is not just the fun of getting wet, and you are ready to align yourself with the will of your Creator, surrender your heart and choices to His leading, and publicly declare your old self dead and new self risen in Him – yes, it will be your turn. May that day come soon, little one.
We pile in and head home, the kids hardly able to contain themselves, so full of joy. And I find my daughter in the shower, singing, “I am baptized, haleluia!” And I find my son so excited he can hardly get his pj’s on straight. And I snuggle my toddler and he tells me he loves me and reminds me that it is his turn to get wet in the water-tized.
And my heart is full and it is overflowing.