Monday, April 9, 2012

Happy Easter (and wrapping up Lent)


Happy Easter to everyone! We actually had the most beautiful weather, the sort of weather that I wish we always had. Wearing Easter dresses and having outdoor egg hunts didn't seem ridiculous in this weather.

Easter as a religious educator with young children of her own is tricky, and luckily the Easter Bunny knows how early we have to be to church (7:30 am, folks!), and obliges us by not really hiding anything at our house. The baskets get filled and the dining table is arranged with eggs and flowers and loveliness, and the children wake up to that before dressing quickly and off we go!

It all went well, although Easter always feels like I am running a carnival, what with the Children's Worship, the coordination of the Egg Hunt, the general management of children that have already consumed a lot of candy and are hyper with sugar and excitement, then walking them all down the street to the park to do the egg hunt, and then running a Prize Table where they can exchange empty eggs for little toys and treats the congregation had donated for them.

In the midst of all of that, there was a moment in the guided meditation with the whole group that I actually felt like this is working, they are really internally focused and getting something out of this. And there was another moment as the kids were rotating between three volunteers who were reading to them the stories of Jesus, Osiris, and Persephone, that I looked into a classroom and thought this is working, they are really enjoying this and making connections between story symbol and their understanding of truth. And then there was the egg hunt when I looked at them and thought, this is really working, and they are all having so much lovely fun!

And after church we drove up to my Dad's house and had a big family Easter dinner, and my step-mother put on another egg hunt for the kids.

Easter marks the end of Lent, and I learned and grew from my Lenten practices this year. The fasting didn't last the whole 40 days, but was valuable while it lasted. I'm mulling over the spiritual value of fasting in general, but for me in particular it was a good chance to face issues of my past anorexia, my own health, my control issues, and when is something Enough. I also followed a Lenten practice of reading something "valuable" (I focused on books about Sabbath, Spring, Voluntary Simplicity, and Happiness) and journaling from that prompt daily, and that has been a wonderful practice for me. That I wish to keep doing even after Lent is over. The focus of readings will change as the seasons of my life change, but the practice can continue.

I hope you all had as good an Easter as we did. Now, we turn to the second part of Spring, the sunshine, growing, flowers everywhere part of Spring. Enjoy it!

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