Thankfulness is pouring out of me today – it’s overflowing and cascading over every inch of my body. I’m drenched in gratitude.

This thankfulness has been born out of a heart set on celebrating – a heart that is reminiscing on the blessing this life really is. Today I’m reminded that I have more than enough reason to celebrate and I want to welcome you into that, to explore what it looks like and feels like to rejoice in what this coming weekend holds.

This weekend I’m celebrating the life of the King.

Often my celebration is thwarted by mourning; deep sorrow overwhelms my ability to rejoice. When I stop and think about what those days leading up to his death truly looked like I get caught up in a million unanswered questions.

Sometimes I try to think about how He would have felt – What it would have looked like to see the world through Jesus’ eyes. Who would he have seen? What looks or expressions would they be wearing? Would they cast disapproving glances in His direction? Would they look on in disgust? Would there be some people who would show compassion in their eyes but remain silent – fear keeping them amongst the crowd?

In the midst of all that I wonder what Jesus was thinking. How amongst all of the hurt, accusations, and disapproval Jesus still saw them as His children. He was unwavering, unchanging and constant; He was unfailing in his love for them. And while he was being mocked, ridiculed and beaten, He knew the entire time His sacrifice was for them. And without fear or reservation he trudged onwards. He humbly surrendered to death, death on a cross, knowing that this was the only way to truly rescue us.

What if that was the end of the story? A brave soul, a wise teacher, a peaceful man – nailed to a cross, mocked and shamed and left to die? But this story doesn’t end in death and disappointment. We aren’t left with bitterness and frustration. No, this story resumes three days later with the most extravagant and triumphant of conclusions.

Three days later there is an empty tomb. Three days later there is no body to be found. The book of Matthew tells us that the women outside of the tomb were “filled with joy” when they heard the goods news; that upon seeing Jesus “[the women] ran to him, grasped his feet, and worshipped him.

As I read that I have to ask myself “Is that my posture of celebration on Easter weekend?” Do I actually grasp the magnitude of what this weekend is all about? Do I stop and take more than a mere moment to consider the price Jesus paid for my life? And if by chance I answer yes to all those questions one larger question remains – As I reflect this weekend on the life, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ, am I filled with Joy, and does that joy cause me to fall at his feet and worship him?

So here’s my challenge to you and to myself this Easter Weekend. Let’s CELEBRATE – Let’s be filled with joy! Let’s shout and dance and scream at the top of our lungs because we are loved infinitely by the King. My prayer is that we might start to live a little differently as a result of recognizing that truth – that we are loved by a King who conquered death and loved by a King who LIVES!

-Kaitlyn