Spring wonder and Easter preparations

Published 11:53 am Wednesday, March 24, 2021

By Jan Penton-Miller

Panolian Columnist

The wonder of spring is everywhere I look these days, and what a lovely sight to see! On a brief walk or a ride to town my eyes catch sight of the colorful array on almost every corner. The yellows, pinks, purples, and whites shout a friendly hello as I drink in their beauty.

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Spring must surely be God’s way of telling us that He is faithful year after year. No matter what else is happening those bulbs pop up through the ground and put on such a show that they almost take my breath away.     

The thing about bulbs, flowering trees and bushes is someone had to look into the future and see more than just a dried up bulb or skinny little stick. They had to imagine what could happen with some work and planning. A beautiful garden takes thought and preparation just like anything else worth having.     

For nature lovers there is so much joy in seeing the earth go through the renewal and rebirth of spring. And for Christians it also heralds what I believe is our most important holiday, Easter. 

When my children were small the preparations for Easter started early. There were new clothes and shoes to purchase as well as hats and gloves for my daughter, Melinda. Everyone spiffed up to look their finest for Easter Sunday.

The wearing of Easter finery was passed down from the generation before, and we always looked forward to seeing all the children scrubbed and looking their best.     

Easter dinner was usually a baked ham with pineapple and cherries along with all sorts of sides and desserts. Many times I made a bunny cake with coconut frosting. I used food coloring to create the pink inside the bunny ears. Every little part of our tradition helped to create memories of this special day.   

Easter egg hunts were always so much fun. We finally got smart and went to plastic eggs stuffed with candy after a few times of finding rotten eggs in the yard days later. There are not many things that smell worse than a boiled and colored egg, which has spent too much time in a sunny hiding place. 

All the preparations were pretty elaborate, but the most touching part of an Easter celebration for me has always been the sunrise service. As a little girl our small congregation would meet at Dr. Neely’s pond. The preacher would herald the new day with a talk about the true meaning of Easter. I remember the quiet joy of a sunrise, and the comfort of knowing that Jesus rose from the grave and He lives!     

This year I think that I may enjoy Easter with a greater awareness of the many blessings of life. As the sun warms the earth and the cold days of winter become a thing of the past I look forward to Easter as a wonderful reminder that our God is indeed faithful.

Write to Jan Penton-Miller at jpentonauthor@gmail.com