As I scrolled through my social media feed during the Easter season this year, I came across that question. It had probably been asked by some internet-famous individual who posed it not because they are concerned with the answer but because they thought it would get shared. The person that shared it in my feed likely heard it from someone else, and then posted it. The heart of the question, though, got me thinking.
Why don’t we? Is Jesus any less raised on the second Sunday in August, or a Wednesday night in September than He is on Easter Sunday? I began to think heavily on the subject.
Because of my experience in church ministry and being on staff at numerous churches, I know that churches put more effort and money into Easter and Christmas than any other times of year. We send out postcards or letters, have special events to try and draw extra people in, and much more all in an effort to maximize attendance on this day that celebrates the resurrection of our Savior, Jesus Christ.
Do we see such huge numbers on Easter because of what we put into it? Since we go out and invite more people, have more practices to make sure everything is just right, and spend a little extra time and money to make sure it all goes smoothly… is that why it is such an important day?
Now I know what some of you ministry types might be saying right now, “Creasters (the church staff term for those who only attend on Easter and Christmas) only give us this one shot to impress them and get them to come more often.” “It is the biggest Sunday of the year because of what Jesus did on this day.” “We just want it to be perfect to better minister to people.” “Jesus is worth all the extra effort so we can reach more people.” Etc., etc., etc., on and on the reasons go.
And you know what, I agree with every one of these on some level.
Yes, we may only get this one chance to impress the “Creasters”, but they shouldn’t be impressed with our production value, they should be impressed with our love, our graciousness, our friendliness, and our acceptance.
Yes, it is a very important day, because it is the celebration of Jesus rising from the grave; something upon which the power of our faith rests, but there is no stronger a measure of grace and forgiveness available to me or anyone else on this day. The beauty of Jesus’ victory that day is that it meant that forgiveness was available to anyone, anytime, anywhere. Not just on one day, but always.
Yes, practice and rehearsal will help the service to flow better, to have fewer distractions, and to limit interruptions in the flow of the service on a day when you will likely be serving more people than usual. Yet, when statements like so “we can reach more people” start popping up, I get a little nervous. I usually offer a follow up question, like what role do we play in drawing someone to Christ? The fact is that we will present information and personal experiences to them as evidence of Christ, but the Scriptures teach us it is the Holy Spirit that will draw them to Him (Ephesians 2:8). Not us. He does the saving. So yes, let’s practice and be ready so that we are not responsible for quenching the Spirit, but let’s also keep in mind that no amount of practice on our part will ever save anyone. We practice to ensure we do not get in the way of the work of the Holy Spirit.
So that all being said, and my position on it a little clearer, what do we do with the original question?
Why don’t we treat every Sunday like Easter Sunday?
There is a lot of truth in that question. A lot. Because Jesus isn’t more raised on that day. He isn’t more likely to move and save on that day.
Do we take it more seriously though….? Do we? Are we the ones actually impeding the work of the Holy Spirit the rest of the year? Are we quenching the spirit (1 Thessalonians 5:19)? Why does our love not add to our numbers daily like it did for the church in Acts (Acts 2:47)?
We no longer have unity, which according to Jesus himself (John 17:23) was how people would know He was the son of God. On Easter, though, we seem to be more united and focused on ushering others into His presence and ensuring that nothing gets in the way of God speaking to them. We invite more people because the pastor asks us to all the time, and we think that it is easier to get them to come on Easter because most people go to church anyway.
But the question still remains, why don’t Christians treat every Sunday like Easter Sunday? Why do we not constantly live in the victory of his salvation?
I know why non-Christians don’t, but why don’t Christians? Those of us who claim by that Name to be followers of Jesus. That means our lives should resemble His. Why don’t we do everything that is in His name with excellence (2 Timothy 2:15, Colossians 3:23-34, Matthew 5:16, 1 Corinthians 15:58)?
We need to start treating every Sunday like it was Easter Sunday. I think that would speak volumes to those around us. As it stands right now, we are training them to think Easter and Christmas are more important because those are the only times we make a big deal about Christ’s victory or invite them to our services. Are we in the church really the ones responsible for Creasters?
If we were always as amped up and real about Christ and our faith as we are on Easter and Christmas, would the world look on and wonder more about what we believe? Would they want it more?
So let me pose the question a little different this time: Why don’t we act like Jesus is powerful and important every week? Why don’t we act like He can save people any time He chooses? Why do we only love those we know enough to invite them twice a year?
Why don’t we treat every Sunday like Easter Sunday?