Sunday, April 24, 2011

He has risen!

We enjoyed a wonderful combined service at Kowloon International Baptist Church this morning. Congregational members were invited to adorn a cross at the front of the church with flowers. (Thank you, Veronica, for sharing your flowers with us as we had forgotten to bring any!)

Here is the Harvey family on our second Easter in Hong Kong.

After church, many of the congregation members walked to a nearby restaurant to share in an Easter lunch together. I thought the dumplings were especially delicious!

I can't really explain why I am so opposed to any Halloween celebrations yet I willingly participate in a festival that also has pagan roots, namely Easter. I guess I would answer people by saying that we have made it into a Christian celebration. This weekend we have spent plenty of time reflecting on what Jesus did for us on the cross. Jemilla and Keegan loved the recent elementary Easter chapel service where it was stressed that Buddha's tomb and Mohammed's tomb are both occupied. Only Jesus rose from the dead. We rejoice in the sacrifice that he made, so that we might live. The presence of chocolate rabbits or eggs in our house does not impact on our faith or how we celebrate Easter.

In the last fortnight I struggled to share the Easter story with my little class at school. Due to their disabilities, it's hard to know how much these students understand of these often complex Bible stories. I try my best to tell the story in different ways, with visuals, songs, craft, etc. One student, upon hearing of Jesus' death on the cross, broke into tears saying the story was just "so sad". Her mother told me later that it was actually the first time she had heard about the crucifixion. I was really moved by her response.

During the sermon this morning I recalled how in Africa as a teenager I participated in several Christian outreaches to villages where we showed the Jesus film in the local dialect. It still gives me chills to remember how when the movie reached the point of Jesus rising from the dead, spontaneous applause and cheers would break out from the crowd. They were just so excited and thrilled with the events of the story that they were seeing for the first time that they could not contain their joy.

Maybe you are like me and are very familiar with the Easter story. I pray that today you will find a new and fresh way of looking at the enormous sacrifice Jesus made for you. And as our pastor said this morning, the cross does not have "The End" engraved on it; the cross is the beginning of new life!


  1. Thanks for sharing your thoughts. I found it a bit challenging to explain the Easter story to Josiah but was surprised by how intently he wanted to understand. Bless you, your students and family!

  2. Lovely post Renee. So encouraging to receive that feedback from school :)