I don’t get to spend Easter with my family today.
Easter will still be special. It’s about so much more than family. As the girls grew up, nearly every Easter was spent on the farm where I was raised. Church came first. At least one of us served on Easter Sunday. It set the tone of the day for me. It was a celebration of life. Even on those early and busy Easter mornings, there was a pervasive peace and excitement as I remembered what Jesus had done and what it meant for me for that day and every day afterward.
Then we’d drive a little less than an hour and spend the rest of the day with my family. The girls played with their cousins. Many of us jumped onto the trailer behind the ATV and rode around the farm to find clues that ended in bags of goodies for all the littles. We had Easter egg hunts, flew kits, argued about game rules, and ate too much.
The family celebration has changed over the years. The littles grew. They sometimes missed the Easter celebration because they lived states or countries away. They brought friends who wouldn’t have otherwise spent the holiday with family and friends and homecooked food. New faces have joined the mix as people have married and families have grown. Others are no longer with us.
I will miss them today.
I won’t mind the quiet day. In fact, it will be a blessing in the middle of a busy, odd season. But I will still miss them.
The last time most of us were together, my nephew gave my mom a canvas that represents our family. We are still growing and changing, but I love the snapshot of where we are right now. Each bird represents a family. The colors reveal the relationships. I love my side of the tree.
I love everyone in the tree.
There are so many other people in my life, but most of these people have done life with me for a long time. We don’t all do daily life together, but we have a connection that pulls us back together. Maybe not in person today, but in more important ways.
Even on this quietest Easter morning, there is a pervasive peace and excitement as I remember and thank God for today and every day afterward.