I continue my cleaning today.
And preparation for Palm Sunday Weekend and Easter Weekend.
I really love those two weekends.
Mother always made my Easter Dresses. Always. She made all my dresses - all my clothes for the most part.
So - the year I "joined the church" - didn't have a clue about redemption, rebirth - but I joined the church about the year I was 12 or in the fifth grade - maybe 6th grade. I'm not sure. Mother made me a dress for that day - and it was on Palm Sunday that our little class of kids were joining. The most I remember about that day is the dress I wore and being "sprinkled" because it had not happened as a baby for me. None of the doctrine - none of the heart issues - just the external.
The dress was a lavender gingham, sleeveless, scooped neck, waist, full skirt, just above the knee - length.
She made a white jacket to go with it - short sleeved and short, just above the waist, length - it had an applique made from the gingham - in the shape of a flower. I really liked that dress and felt very special that I had a new dress for Palm Sunday and for Easter.
What that meant to me, after I joined, was that I could now "take communion" when everyone else did - and I could also get my own offering envelopes. I loved all of that stuff - actually - I retract that. I had already been able to take communion - as a child. It was just my getting the envelopes that was added on - I thought that was a big deal.
I know that I had always taken communion because it was something I looked forward to - getting up - going down front - tasting the grapejuice. My cousin Rachel, when very young, after taking communion, was quoted as whispering to her mom, "I liked the refreshments".
So - Easter, Palm Sunday - wondering in my head exactly what they meant when they said, "Jesus died on the cross to take away our sins". That line confused me a lot - because I knew that even though I was a pretty good little girl, and I aspired to be that, still - there was sin - or bad deeds - I recall in the fifth grade - being assigned to do the bulletin board for our class - out in the hall - along with another little boy in our class - it was a cool assignment - because, well, it involved some design elements - and we got to leave the classroom and go out in the hall to work on it. So - our public school teacher - since it was the Easter Season - gave us a box of Easter Pictures. There were no bunny rabbits - they were all about the crucifixion and the resurrection. And some construction paper letters to make the title. I don't recall the title. What I recall was having a hard time looking at the pictures of the crucifixion. Even though I didn't understand His work on the cross - I believed that He did die for me, in just that way - and even though I had not been redeemed, yet, He had given me a heart for Him. I loved God a lot - I was drawn to Him in a way that I recognized. I could hardly look at the pictures and know that He truly suffered that way. It was hard. Imagine being in a public school and doing a bulletin board about Christ on the Cross and His resurrection. Imagine that.
That was in about 1962, I guess.
So - today is today - God revealed His truth about the gospel - to me in 1968. I understood that He had taken on my sin - so that I could take on His righteousness. Man! I said yes and He indwelt me.
Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who according to His great mercy has caused us to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, to obtain an inheritance which is imperishable and undefiled and will not fade away, reserved in heaven for you, who are protected by the power of God through faith for a salvation ready to be revealed in the last time. 1 Peter 1: 3-5
I really like Easter. I like the bunny rabbits and chicks and easter eggs, too - and the flowers and grass - and all in God's creation that looks like His resurrection. I think it's a great picture/image of His new life and what looks dormant and dead, isn't - The season is like a rebirth - what happens in our soul when He enters in. He breathes life into us.