What is Easter to you?Is it…chocolate bunnies, decorated eggs, ribbon-rimmed baskets?Is it…new spring clothes, hot cross buns, sunrise service in a cemetery?Is it…family going to worship together all sitting on the same pew?Is it…singing your alleluias loud and long?Is it…seeing Jesus everywhere, not just in the mirror?When I was a young girl Easter meant something new! As one of five girls, hand-me-downs were the order of the day, but on Easter we got at least one thing new to wear. Maybe a dress or hat or gloves or ruffle rimmed socks. So my focus on Easter was always, “How do I look?” in whatever new thing I had been given.But as I gazed in the mirror and asked the question my father always had a ready answer. He would say with a voiced filled with love, “Don’t worry about what people are thinking about you…they are not thinking about you.”In our selfie obsessed culture his words of wisdom have never seemed truer. My father would add, “When I look at another person and talk with her or listen to him, I try to never ask myself what impression am I making on this person. But rather ask myself, ‘What can I do to be of the greatest help to this person?'”Easter is a reminder that we are on Holy Ground every day when we act on that question.The Christian faith is focused on a person. Jesus Christ is the essential fact of historyhis life, his death, and his resurrection. His life appeals to everyone who has heard the story. His death demands of all who give it thought. But without the resurrection, without Easter, there would be no story. The evidence for the resurrection is not just the empty tomb. The real evidence is the women and men who meet the risen Christ and who witness to the resurrection with their lives. Holy Ground is anywhere we serve as the reconciling love of faith from the maternity ward to the hospice wing.Rev. Margaret Almeida is the pastor at Second Presbyterian Church in Salisbury, North Carolina.
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Over four centuries ago Sir Walter Raleigh described the muscadine as being, “On the sand and on the green soil, on the hills as on the plains, as well as on every little shrub … […]