Steve Cook's soul, song, and sweat.

Easter thoughts 04-08-12

Happy Easter!

When I was young(er), I was the worst sort of hoarder.  Not in the ‘Can’t walk through the house because of all the stuff’ kind (well, maybe in my studio), but at Easter and Christmas, I would save my candy.  I just didn’t really have a sweet tooth.  My brothers would be at the bottom of the fake Easter grass by about 2 PM on Sunday, and a week later you would still see half a rabbit and some chocolate coins still in the basket.  Or were those left over from Christmas?  See?  It’s a problem.  But I also learned very early that you are a target if you are saving your chocolate, especially at age 10 with three hungry brothers smelling chocolate in the water.

My Mom used to always hide our Easter baskets, and we would be given clues as to its location.  On occasion, I would be up at a house-quiet 6 AM searching for my basket, then go to bed and sleep in, knowing the location of my plastic pastel eggs filled with treats.  Sneaky, sure, but I could sleep a little more, and I would feel like I beat my brothers.  Not that the competition really mattered.  Mom was good about making sure the 4 of us had our fair share.  I remember one Easter – there were probably more – when my Dad was out at sea with the Navy.  Those kind of holidays were the hardest on her, and of course, being children, we didn’t realize just how hard until later in life.

I am now married and spending our first Easter apart.  I had a show pop up at the last minute, and she went home for the holiday, so we couldn’t have today together.  And we’ve been married 3 weeks! Such is my life, though, so I am used to it.  Making the best of it, I got up early this morning, tried to find a suitable outfit, and made it downtown to visit a new church.  I was pleasantly surprised at not only the church, but the refreshing Easter message, and the approach to the service.  Plus the fact that it’s a beautiful day here made it that much nicer.  To spend the time with my wife would have been better, but we make do when we have to, right?

My Easter is not sad because I am alone today (I have had some Easter get-together offerings that I may attend later), but reflective on life.  First, my heart goes out to the people around the world who aren’t home today but wish they could be.  If you are ‘stuck’ with your family and you are miserable, then shame on you – there will be a day when you won’t be with them and you will miss it.  I am encouraged and excited for the future.  Lent is over, and Christ is risen, and for some it is like a renewal – almost a New Year’s Day reset switch.  It is a renewal of faith, and if for some reason yours has wavered, then that’s OK – there is time.

Before the fence-sitters or non-Christians jump in on this – let me make something clear – your faith is your faith.  I am not preaching any God or god or dog or deity or whatever you call your own.  I am preaching faith – faith in something.  But let’s take it down a notch – just below your religious thoughts.  How about about faith in yourself?  Knowing that you have confidence in yourself is immensely important, and not only goes hand-in-hand with a bigger faith, but faith in YOU also takes care of the little stuff too.

There is a difference in faith and confidence: faith gives you confidence.  It’s almost like breathing – you shouldn’t need to think about it – your body has a wonderful involuntary mechanism built in to get your heart going, your lungs expanding, and your capillaries cappilatin’.  The goal is to get your faith (and therefore your confidence) up to involuntary status.  Enough to not even think about it, and then channel that into something great.  We have been given just enough foolishness to believe that we really can change the world.  And we can.  We really can.

So whether you believe in the Resurrection or just a bunny that brings too much sugar to girls and boys everywhere, it’s OK.  Just believe in something.  And if you happen to find a moment to close your eyes and reflect, I think you will find that you are much stronger than you think.

Enjoy the day, and Happy Easter.


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