Easter Isn’t About Eggs. It’s About Renewal

By Linda Hart Green

Maybe, like me, you have driven by the site of the former Zaxby’s restaurant on South 14th Street, looked at the sign and the vacant plot of earth and marveled, “That’s one heck of a remodel!” The first time I saw the sign, the outer walls of the building were being knocked down.

The next time I saw it, the building was a pile of rubble. And the time after that, the spot was leveled and cleared.

I think of a “remodel” more like a renovation of what already exists. Sometimes a remodel turns into a “remuddle” with a revised structure that lacks good flow of the space and the looks of a design by committee. The restaurant chain must have decided that their Amelia Island customers deserved a new, larger building, re-sited on their lot. That was too much to say on a sign.

The Christian liturgical calendar calls today Palm Sunday, the beginning of Holy Week, which culminates in Easter, the celebration of Jesus’ resurrection. Easter is not just a time for new clothes, egg hunts, chocolate bunnies and ham dinners. It points to a remodel for all of humanity of the kind that the old restaurant experienced. Boom! The old structure is destroyed and a new one is underway.

Paul, the prodigious letter writer of the Christian Scripture, describes it like this in one of his letters to the church at Corinth. The textual reference is 2 Corinthians 5:17-18, if you are the type that likes to look up these things. A couple decades had passed since the historical events had taken place. Words ascribed to Paul have been twisted into all kinds of meanings over the centuries that have wounded more than they have healed. What is said here is one of his better moments. He really gets the bigger picture.

If the traditional way the Christian message has been presented doesn’t do it for you, I get that. If you have been hurt by the institutional church at some point, I get that too. Hey, it was through the institution of the church that I was told to use my gifts in service of others and also that I couldn’t be a preacher because I was a girl. Talk about confusing!

On the other hand, who among us hasn’t felt the need for some personal remodeling? We have habits we can’t break. Trauma from which we can’t shake loose. Broken relationships we can’t mend.

And what about the needed remodeling of our world? Oh my! The planet itself is pretty darn wonderful, but wow! Have we humans messed it up environmentally, politically, economically etc. Even the institution that was set up (by men, sorry to say) to celebrate Easter has caused a lot of trouble globally and has experienced corruption internally.

A relatively new corruption of the Easter story is the merger of the Christian message with that of a vision of the history of this country. It ignores a lot of obvious flaws and flaunts a vision of a religious and political merger which was never intended by the Jesus of the Bible or our country’s founders. The cross on which Jesus died and the flag of any nation are not symbols that should ever go together.

The Bible is also pretty clear that the new structure is not here … yet. But, it is now possible. It’s the way of love, inclusion and welcome. There are no insiders and outsiders. There are no “better thans.” Judgment is between the person and God, not anyone else. We’ve been given the freedom to choose the way of love or not. We have been given the chance to fail and to try again and again and again.

Whether or not you identify yourself as Christian by heritage or by practice, you might find you could use a little remodeling. Or maybe you’ve been involved in trying to help fix the remuddling in our world and find yourself tired, angry or disillusioned. Remind yourself that you have the opportunity for a new way of being, of seeing yourself and others and of being energized for the work of transformation, love and healing.

I mean no disrespect by using the demolition of a restaurant building as an analogy for much larger, more important ideas. I was driving down South 14th Street, saw the destroyed restaurant building and pulled my car over and took a photo with my phone. These are the thoughts that came to me from that scene to share with you this week.

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Richard Timm
Trusted Member
Richard Timm(@rtimm-ontheislandgmail-com)
19 days ago

Thank you Linda.

Mark Tomes
Active Member
Mark Tomes(@mtomes)
19 days ago

Our religions can certainly lead to a moral life, although too often the reasons that people get involved in their religion also inhibit them from being truly whole and moral people. Most of the atheists I know are also most of the most moral people I know.

anna
Trusted Member
anna(@anna)
18 days ago
Reply to  Mark Tomes

Blasphemy!!!

missyjean
missyjean(@missyjean)
9 days ago
Reply to  Mark Tomes

That is hilarious

SnappyClam
Active Member
SnappyClam(@joesnappyclam-com)
19 days ago

Gentle Friendly Reminder: “Don’t Drink and Dye Eggs!”.

Jay Kayne
Trusted Member
Jay Kayne(@jay-kayne)
19 days ago

What a wonderful example of a creativity technique known as “stimulus/response.” The “remodeling” sign was the stimulus. The response requires one ask two questions. 1) What is this trying to tell me? 2) How is it relevant to something I need to do?  And, as you have shown, the stimulus can be a totally unrelated and seemingly mundane observation. Thank you for sharing!

WendeBurdick
Active Member
WendeBurdick(@wendeburdick)
14 days ago

Thank you for this analogy Linda, I always appreciate a visual reference. Can you please provide a reference for “The Bible is also pretty clear that the new structure is not here … yet” I’d like to read more on this. Also, is the renewal you speak of in the body or in spirit?

missyjean
missyjean(@missyjean)
9 days ago

Easter is about GOD and the Resurrection of his son our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. May God bless and protect everyone who praises the King of ALL

missyjean
missyjean(@missyjean)
9 days ago

Clearly this writer Linda Hart Green knows very little about Christianity. Fernandina Observer please can we do better than this for our community?

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