I have many thoughts, words and images swirling in my head but since it is Sunday I thought I’d go in a different direction.  Sundays are not counted in the days of Lent because, as far as I understand, they are still to be celebrations of the resurrection of Jesus.  For although we are people who are walking in Lent right now – looking at our sin, living in self-examination, opening our hearts to the work of the Spirit – we must never forget that we are really Easter people.  We are people of the resurrection, of joy, of great hope, not defined by our sin but by the freeing work of Jesus’ death and resurrection.  We are deeply known and a superabundance of love and delight have been poured out upon us. We are a redeemed people living within God’s great plan of redeeming all creation.

This last week I had a glimpse of Easter.  Now I must say it was not some grand, world-changing event.  It was a mother’s glimpse of Easter – seen in the life of my daughter and whispered to me by God.

For years my husband and I worked in youth ministry, and I loved it.  I loved making sure that students felt embraced when they walked in the room, that they had someone to sit with, and they knew someone would remember their name when they came the next time.  I loved picking kids up and going to the mall, going to track meets, and having overnighters.  I loved having conversations about life and God with junior highers and high schoolers – really believing that they could walk with God and be His agents of change in their worlds.   I loved in the Scriptures where Paul says “I will most gladly spend and be expended for your souls” and I tried to live that out with our students.

It was a sad time in my life when God took us out of that realm of influence and began to lead us down new and different adventures.  For the past several years, I have had to wrestle with Him about where I serve in His body.  I had to box up all those times, passions, and memories (and places I felt comfortable and good in) and give the package to God – trusting Him to do with it what He desired.  It was the death of a dream and I had to lay it and leave it with Him.

Then this last week, as I picked up our daughter from youth group, God whispered some Easter words into my heart.  I went to the door of the house where the kids meet and I met her small group leader.  As I did, it was as if God said “Tara, you are meeting yourself”.  (I was slightly confused and thought that was a little strange and perhaps self-centered on my part.)  Then, as we drove home, He poured words into my soul that brought me to tears.  He let me know that He still had the dream that I left with Him many years ago in His hands.  He had not forgotten one single event, activity, deed, dollar, minute, or prayer that had been given to Him through our ministry to the students.  And not only had He not forgotten, He is taking all those things that I thought had died and let me know that He is going to return them…and dump them out on our daughter.

That is my Easter glimpse.  To know the joy of a dream thought dead now poured out on my child.  To see her growing and walking in love for Jesus within a community who wants to deeply know her and love her.  To know that God does not forget those things given to Him in faith and love.  To feel that delight of the Father because He cares enough to tell my mothering heart these things.