I have many fond memories of Easter Mornings. The many early morning services I conducted in some of the weirdest and most beautiful of places and then of course the services in prisons and hospitals. Of course I also made a great attempt to have an interesting and meaningful service in the Church.
One way and another a very early start to the day and a very busy day all round.
Like so many other things in life I slowly watched the emphasis shift from it being a religious service for all to the place of children becoming more and more the central point.
It all became more about chocolate and bunnies than death and life.
Then holidays began to get more important. I remember being told by leader of a girls organisation that it was a great pity the Easter service fell on a holiday Sunday, it meant she could not bring the girls along to church.
No longer being involved in the ministry I still find a touch of sadness at how little it all means to society.
But life moves on.
A man was driving along the road when saw the Easter rabbit hopping across the middle of the road. He swerved to avoid hitting the rabbit, but unfortunately the Easter bunny jumped in front of the car and was struck by his car.
The basket of eggs, the rabbit was carrying, went flying all over the place. The driver, being a sensitive man, as well as an animal lover, pulled over to the side of the road, and got out to see what had become of the rabbit carrying the basket. Much to his dismay, the colourful rabbit was dead.
The driver felt so awful, he began to cry.
A woman driving down the road saw the man crying on the side of the road and pulled over. She stepped out of her car and asked the man what was wrong. 'I feel terrible', he explained, 'I accidentally hit the Easter rabbit and killed it. Children will be so disappointed. What should I do?'
The woman told the man not to worry. She knew what to do. She went to the boot of her car, and pulled out a spray can. She walked over to the dead, limp rabbit, and sprayed the contents of the can onto the furry animal.
Miraculously the Easter rabbit came to life, jumped up, picked up the spilled eggs, waved its paw at the two humans and hopped down the road.
50 metres away the Easter rabbit stopped turned around, waved and hopped down the road.
50 metres further on, he turned again, waved and hopped another 50 metres, again he waved.
The man was astonished. He couldn't figure out what substance could be in the woman's spray can. He ran over to the woman and asked, 'What is in your spray can? What did you spray on the Easter rabbit?'
The woman turned the can around so that the man could read the label. It said: "Hair spray. Restores life to dead hair. Adds permanent wave."
Have a Happy Easter and for those who still hold on to the heart of Easter May you God be with you and today one of great joy.