Spiritual Practices for the Easter Season

by Christine Sine
sunset in bergen ian thomson2 - lynn babb

Sunset in Bergen by Ian Thomson2 used with permission

By Lynne Baab

Did you know that in many times and places in Christian history, Easter has been viewed as a season, not just a day? The Easter season goes from Easter Day to Pentecost Sunday (May 15 this year), a period of seven weeks. Because Jesus’ resurrection is such a huge, amazing, overwhelming, fantastic gift to us, focusing on it for seven weeks allows time to ponder many aspects of what we receive on Easter Day.

The liturgical color for the Easter season is white to reflect the holiness and purity of Jesus, which enabled him to die in our place. White also symbolizes light. Jesus submitted to the darkness of the grave, and Easter morning he came back into the light, and his own light was again revealed. Paintings of Jesus after the resurrection often show him surrounded by light.

What spiritual practices are appropriate in a season of light and joy? This is a season of feasting, not fasting. Celebrate joy and light in whatever ways you can. Ponder, journal or talk with others about the joyful events of Easter and what they mean for you. Here are some suggestions for spiritual practices for the Easter season:

  1. Practice thankfulness. Watch for God’s good gifts in your life and your loved one’s lives. Look for signs of Jesus’ resurrection life in events and people around you. Go out of your way to express gratitude and love to people who have cared for you. Pay attention to the small gifts of daily life, and thank God for them. To help you pay attention, consider starting (or re-starting) a thankfulness journal and commit to adding five items to the list each day. Or partner with others to talk through the things you’re thankful for every day. Be sure to pray your thanks as well.
  2. Focus on light. Watch for the word “light” in scriptures, praise songs, hymns and poetry. Write a poem or statement about the ways Jesus is your light, and ask for further light in specific areas of your life and in the lives of loved ones. Use various names for God and Jesus in breath prayers: “Lord Jesus Christ, light of the world, shine your light on me” (John 8:12). “Jesus, bright morning star, guide my steps” (Revelation 22:16). “Word of God, be the lamp to my feet and the light on my path” (Psalm 119:105). “Lord God, sun and shield, give me your light and protection” (Psalm 84:11). All of these prayers can be prayed for others as well as for yourself.
  3. Ponder the fact that Jesus has freed “those who all their lives were held in slavery by the fear of death” (Hebrews 2:15). In what ways has Jesus freed you from that fear? In what ways would you like to experience more freedom? What do you think that might look like? Journal or talk with a friend about the role fear of death has played in your life. Pray your thanks, and pray for further growth in this area.

The seven-week Easter season nudges us to look at life through the lens of resurrection power. Maybe you’ll think of additional ways to do that.

Bless the Lord, O my soul.

O Lord my God, you are very great.

You are clothed with honor and majesty,

wrapped in light as with a garment (Psalm 104:1).

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3 comments

jennethsuzanne March 29, 2016 - 5:01 am

Thank you Lynne, this is such a special reading!

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Meditation Monday – Practicing Resurrection is Very Simple – Godspace April 4, 2016 - 2:41 am

[…] that is not what resurrection is all about. As Lynne Baab commented in Spiritual Practices for the Easter Season, this is a season of light and joy. Light and joy don’t take spectacle to live out. Jesus […]

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Kate Rae Davis April 6, 2016 - 8:48 am

I love the “focus on light” as a spiritual practice. Even on days that I don’t actively engage scripture or hymns, I’m certainly noticing the earlier sunrises on my morning commute and the lengthening evenings. Thank you for the reminder that this noticing is also easter!

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