Easter Sunday begins early in these parts. The ministerial gets together to lead a Sonrise Service – a tradition that goes back 50 years, as of this morning.
We awake in the dark and make our various ways up to the top of Centennial Hill in Etobicoke. At the moment of the official sunrise, we begin the service – with readings, hymns and responses, we remember that our Lord lives. And the idea that that which binds us together is eminently stronger than that which separates us, is embodied in our shared worship.
It was a soggy morning on the hill, this morning (so much rain yesterday!!), but it was also so much warmer than last year. There was just the faintest touch of sunrise amidst the clouds at the horizon, but the light of Christ shone in our hearts and showed on the faces of those who gathered.
At 10:30am, at Graceview, we gathered for a joyful resurrection service. The hymns, the scriptures, the chocolate eggs hidden among the pews, the prayers and the joyful presence of faithful followers of Jesus combined for a wonderful, uplifting service (if I do say so myself!).
I cannot imagine what my life would be without my faith. I’m not going to tell you that life is always perfect and I easy – I struggle with difficult days just as much as anyone else. But the joy and certainty I have found in Jesus, the love that he showed by laying down his life for me, the reminder that because He lives, I too shall live… these things are beyond precious to me, and they give me the strength to face the bad days with the hope of better days to come.
My prayer is that you, too, would celebrate this day. That you would know that you are loved more than you could ever know, by someone who died to know you. And that the light of that love would shine, even on your darkest days.
He is risen! He is risen, indeed!
Happy Easter, and God bless you!