Easter was amazing.
The resurrection is all about new life, of course, and never has it been more real to me than yesterday. Aside from my job which is to make sure that guests walking in to Grace Family Church are welcomed and assisted in whatever way necessary, I sincerely have an interest in getting people connected to God. For me, that means making sure they have the resources and tools necessary to begin a journey of faith and relationship. Relationship to others at church but, mainly, a relationship with Christ.
This Easter weekend, my church had the distinct privilege of welcoming over 6200 people to worship. We gave away roughly 150 bibles to people who made a first time commitment or rededicated their lives to Christ. I am always moved to tears when I watch people get out of their seat, approach the altar and pray silently or aloud a faith commitment from their heart. They are not promising they won’t stumble; they are promising that when they stumble, they will cast their eyes upon the Lord, get up, and walk again. It’s a beautiful thing.
My own most visible declaration happened in the Catholic church about 17 years ago. I stood during the Easter vigil and was baptized in front of a large crowd holding small candles. I still remember how serene and calming the church was. I still remember how my husband wasn’t there because he was deployed and how that absence made me feel.
Unfortunately, it took years after that for me to establish a meaningful relationship with Christ. I thought He was so far removed from me; I was so small. I hadn’t been taught through months of RCIA that this faith journey was meant to be personal.
Cultivated by a number of things, that relationship blossomed despite my understanding and today…well, today, I can speak to my heavenly father as easily as I can speak to you.
Yesterday, Easter Sunday and what just happened to be my birthday, I had the privilege of watching many people in the congregation walk to the altar… but it didn’t end there.
I walked with one of the people I love most in the world to the altar and watched a relationship begin.
For everyone who asks receives; he who seeks finds; and to him who knocks, the door will be opened. Matthew 7:8 (NIV)
It was as though that missing piece from 17 years ago was found and put in place. It was prayers answered. It was beautiful and I thank you, God, for allowing me to be witness.