We spend a lot of time preparing for Christmas. We love to celebrate the birth of our savior. Yet when Easter comes around there is not much preparation given to the Holy Week. Fundamentally, without it we have no reason to celebrate Christmas at all. Oh, you may get a new suit of clothes, buy a basket for the kids, eat some jelly beans, but if this event is the cornerstone of our faith, what should our week look like? Can we just give ourselves a big gold star for showing up to church on Easter Sunday, having an egg hunt with the kids and dropping by to see grandma? Can we fully celebrate the Resurrection Day without spending time meditating on the depth of his sacrifice?
As we posture our hearts for worship each Sunday, should we not posture our hearts specifically for Easter Sunday? We can prepare our hearts by spending the Holy week remembering and retracing the events that led up to the resurrection of our Lord. Prepare your heart by walking the Via Dolorosa, by submerging yourself in the pages of the story. Put yourself on the street with a palm branch as He entered the city on Sunday, and then hear your own voice shout “Crucify Him” on Friday. Allow yourself to feel the depth of your depravity and the
overwhelming humility of knowing He chose to walk that road, with joy, for you. Luke 9:51 says He set his face to go to Jerusalem. It was not due to a betrayal or trap that he suffered and died but a choice he made for you and me. Out of His great immeasurable love for us, he laid down his life. Begin now and prepare your heart for Resurrection Sunday!
Practically speaking, how can we make this week a Holy week for our family? Here are a few suggestions:
- Set aside a time to read and meditate on the events of that day in the life of Jesus. (John Piper offers a free online devotion for Holy week called Love to the Uttermost)
- Choose a fast for the week, one that will remind you to take time to study, pray and adore Him.
- Take communion at home every day with your family, again taking time to remember, worship and adore Him.
- Finally, let your heart be broken for the lost, kneel, like actually get down on your knees, and pray for the lost that will come to church on Easter Sunday for the 1st time or for their once a year visit.
Whatever it looks like for your family, it should be different from every other week. It should be a week of somber reflection, heart wrenching realization, awe struck wonder, and great jubilation, at the wondrous love He has set on us.
-Pat Reed (A beloved of Jesus. A wife, a mother & grandmother. A worshiper. A cancer survivor. Passionate about seeing the lost come to Christ.)