Mason & I went to sleep on Saturday evening with the bedroom window cracked to let some of the crisp spring air flow through the room. Yes, we did this even despite the pollen storms overtaking the city! Just a little before the alarm was set to go off on Sunday morning, I was awakened by the sound of the most precious birds chirping right outside my window. As I lay in bed enjoying the sound and the last few minutes of rest before the day was to begin, I thought – what a perfect Easter blessing! The birds almost seemed to be perched at the cross & flowers outside the window announcing that Christ has Risen!
After those few extra minutes in bed, the alarm went off and it was time to get up and moving…we had a busy and exciting day planned for us at church. When you’re on church staff, the holidays just don’t seem quite as relaxed and “special” as they did before being on staff, but this one was going to be special – it was our first Easter in the church building!
As Director of Children’s Ministries, I had to get there really early to organize our 2nd annual Easter Egg Hunt, this time on the property so I had to go and actually mark off hunting areas. Thank goodness for the NKPY that showed up early to help hide the eggs and then help the children hunt for them! Don’t know what I would do without them. The egg hunt was lots of fun, and even our new church sign found a few eggs by its side…
Next, I had to go inside while the children were outside hunting and organize our Easter lilies on the stage. Normally this job would fall to the Director of Youth Ministries (my wonderful husband) since the youth were the ones who sold the lilies, but since he was practicing with the church band, it fell to his magnificent “assistant,” me…and a youth that I grabbed to help me. The sanctuary smelled and looked wonderful with all 51 of those beautiful lilies decorating the stage and trumpeting the resurrection of our Lord!
With that all done, I had just over 20 minutes to prepare myself for worship – and the upcoming Children’s sermon. I actually had three roles in the worship service on Easter, and I was honored to participate in the service through prayer, offering and the children’s message. With the children we talked about Jesus being alive and how flowers symbolize life. Each child got their very own bag of seeds to go home and plant, and a prayer with an acrostic for Jesus spelling out FLOWERS. I do hope that the children and their families enjoyed planting the seeds and praying over them as they grow. I had a lot of fun creating the message, and Mason had heaps of fun helping me stuff the bags with seeds and prayers…didn’t you, babe? (Hey, if he can have a YM assistant, I can have a CM assistant, right!?!)
With over 30 children participating in the children’s message, and no Kid’s Kirk program for them this week, I think it went very well. We also learned that we welcomed 348 of God’s children to worship on this glorious Easter Sunday! Praise be to God for a packed house on the most blessed day of our church year!
I do have to say, the day was not all roses, however. Shortly after the service when the family was finished taking pictures, we had some excitement happen…Nana fell, hit her head, and had to be taken to the hospital for tests and observation. As of today, she is doing better, but she is still in the hospital for further testing and observation. She will remain there until they can get her dizzy spells under control. We are praising God that she is doing so much better than she was on Easter afternoon, and we are continuing to ask for God’s healing hand for Nana to regain her strength so that she may return to her home at the Presbyterian Home. We know that they miss her, and she surely does miss them as well.
Before all of the excitement – it’s not a Barrett holiday without some sort of excitement, afterall – we were able to get some great pictures of all of the New Kirk family members together, with Nana, at the beautiful flowered cross. And wonder of wonders, the great-grands even all looked at the camera and smiled! I’m so thankful that we have this great picture to remind us of a glorious Easter in our new church building!
And, leave it to my husband to get a picture of Nana’s ride home…Nana has set a lot of milestones at New Kirk in her short time as member. She’s the oldest member, the first member at the Presbyterian Home, the first to need an ambulance called for her, and…she’s the first to legitimately use the emergency road that wraps around the church building! Way to go, Nana!
All in all, it was a great day to praise God for the life, death and RESURRECTION of our Lord, Jesus Christ. While it didn’t exactly end like we had planned for the day to end, we did have a great start, and we’re all so thankful that Nana was able to get the help and medical attention that she apparently really needed. That in itself is a huge blessing…just fitting that the family was there to be with her, support her and love on her at the same time.
Jesus Christ is Risen! We have great reason to be excited this Easter season, for we are God’s Easter children…and we are redeemed and saved by God’s Son. Praise be to God for the miracle of Easter, and praise be to God for everlasting life.