CHRISTIANS CELEBRATE EASTER EVERY SUNDAY!
It was so wonderful to see your smiling and joyful faces filling up the pews on this year’s Easter Sunday. Everyone’s glowing presence brightened our sanctuary more than the beautiful Easter lilies decorating the chancel area! It was such a joy to have you all – nearly 300 in attendance – for the Easter celebrations!
I gave thanks to God for our church filled with people, and, at the same time, I wondered why we cannot celebrate the Good News of the Resurrection of Christ every Sunday, especially with this huge turnout! So when I delivered my Easter sermon, I emphasized that every Sunday is an Easter Sunday, and that Lent, from Ash Wednesday to Holy Saturday, is a period of 40 days that excludes those Sundays. Every Sunday, regardless of any Christian season, is a celebration of the Resurrection of Christ.
I agree with The United Methodist Book of Worship’s statement: “Sundays are always little Easters” (p. 320). American theologian Robert E. Webber also affirmed in his book, Ancient-Future Time: Forming Spirituality Through The Christian Year, that “Every Sunday is a ‘little Easter.’ Every Sunday of the year is a celebration of the Easter event. The work of the people in ‘doing the Christ event’ through memory and hope is the source for personal and corporate formation into resurrection spirituality” (p. 153).
The early Christians conducted corporate worship on Sundays because it is the “Lord’s Day.” It is the day Jesus rose from the grave on that first Easter morning. Without the Resurrection, our faith is nothing and in vain. The foundation of faith is this Resurrection of Christ, just as Apostle Paul proclaims, “For if the dead are not raised, then Christ has not been raised. If Christ has not been raised, your faith is futile and you are still in your sins. Then those also who have died in Christ have perished. If for this life only we have hoped in Christ, we are of all people most to be pitied” (1 Corinthians 15:16-19).
However, our Christian life is not only about observing every Sunday as a little Easter; rather, every day, we must find our strength from the power of the Risen Christ in order to sustain our lives. Day by day we must trust in God who is ever faithful, always renews us, and empowers us with His grace, mercy, and love.“Praise be to the Lord, to God our Savior, who daily bears our burdens” (Psalm 68:19, NIV).
Soon, I’d like to invite the congregation to sing with me the following song, “Day by Day,” that I have cherished for over thirty years. The lyrics were composed by Karolina W. Sandell-Berg and the music by Oscar Ahnfelt. Let me share with you the first verse:
Day by day, and with each passing moment; Strength I find, to meet my trials here; Trusting in my Father’s wise bestowment; I’ve no cause for worry or for fear. He whose heart is kind beyond all measure; Gives unto each day what He deems best— Lovingly, its part of pain and pleasure; Mingling toil with peace and rest…
Easter Love and Blessings,
Pastor J. T. Kim