Barely old enough to have graduated high school, she already bore marks of maturity far beyond her years. Long hours each day hammering out the ka-ching of the cash register at a major food store had etched a patina of bored professionalism into the smoothness of her young face. Had anyone paid attention on this particular day they would have noticed that her eyes, normally tightly focused on the next item to be rung up, darted with regularity to the clock on the far wall. She could hardly contain her excitement as lunchtime approached.
It was only a few blocks down the street through the springtime heat and humidity of central Florida to the department store where her treasures awaited. With a spring in her step born of joy and the need to be back at work in her allotted thirty minutes, she cast her apron aside and hurried past the garden tools and perfume counter to the clothing side of the store.
The scrap of paper with all the proper measurements scribbled the night before was in her hand as she confidently requested the help of the attendant in finding the right outfit. After all, it was Easter and everybody would be wearing their very best in Sunday’s services at the little church near the center of town.
That is, everybody except her. You see, the Easter clothes for which she was spending her hard earned cash were not for her. They were for her little brother. She had noticed that with the hard times the family was going through, he would have only his usual jeans and tee shirt in which to celebrate the resurrection. Oh, they were clean. No one would say anything. It was just that others would look so nice and fresh while someone she loved was just another little boy.
It was many years before he grasped the significance of the little brown suit he wore that day. The sharply creased pants and nicely shined shoes were appreciated but were quickly eclipsed by the excitement of the Easter egg hunt and dinner on the grounds.
I wish I could remember what my sister wore that Easter. I’m sure it was clean and looked nice. But I’m also quite certain it was last year’s outfit…at least.
As an adult, I have come to appreciate deeply the kindness of that one act at Easter time so long ago. I have also come to be more and more thankful for God’s ultimate act of love when He gave His only begotten Son to die on an old rugged cross so that we can be saved.
Hopefully we will each be motivated to accept His love and to mirror it in our daily lives.
He is RISEN!
Pastor Richard Orrell