Gathering together at the beginning of the day... remembering the surprise of the women who went to the tomb early that morning... retelling the story of that very first Easter... opening our last Resurrection egg, devouring hot cross buns smothered in butter and jam and praying together.
So many questions...
The children are so full of questions these days... questions about truth, about heaven, about Easter, about what God is doing around the world. It stretches me and challenges me, not just to search the scriptures for answers, but also to explain big truths to childlike minds. We actively encourage the children to ask questions about faith... to share doubts and struggles and things they don't understand. We want them to actively grapple, not just blindly accept.
Driving home from Word Alive last week, Dave and I were talking about equipping our kids as they grow up. It feels somewhat like we're entering a new stage of parenting. This is the first time in eight years that we've had a child over 2 without another being on the way (or already arrived) and I'm excited about this new phase. Stretching little minds, encouraging increasing independence, keeping communication lines open and valuing each other... I know these will be areas that will be challenged over the next few years as we hurtle towards the "tween" years, and I'm on my knees about some issue or other most days... looking for strength and wisdom from my heavenly Father. Motherhood is always humbling. Always exhausting. A daily reminder of my faults and failings. And yet it continues to be one of the Father's kindest gifts to me... shaping me and changing me and moulding me... even through the painful bits.
As the children grow, the weight of responsibility feels heavier... as the physical demands become less, the emotional demands build. I long for my kids to be secure and confident of their identity, to be kind and generous, to look beyond this little patch of London and have hearts of compassion. I can strive to drum these things into my children, but experience is teaching me that doesn't work... it just sounds like one endless nagging session, and no-one enjoys that! Only the Spirit can transform their hearts as we seek to direct and guide them and point them to Christ. Oh, this parenting malarkey is a minefield! But such a precious one!
Our Easter morning continued at Church, celebrating the Resurrection with our wider church family... and then back to my parents for an Easter BBQ, we wrapped up the day snuggled on the sofa watching an episode of Torchlighters on Amazon Prime (we've just discovered it and the kids are LOVING them! Cartoons of the life story of people like Gladys Aylward, Amy Carmichael, Jim Elliot and Martin Luther!)
Easter was precious... but the beauty of it is, its not just about Easter Sunday. Because of Christ's sacrifice and resurrection, we live each and every day in the light of what he's done for us... so roll on Tuesday morning!
I hope you all had a wonderful, sunshine filled Easter weekend