Seriously, isn’t that precious? Look at my cute kids happily concentrating on decorating Easter eggs. The time-honored tradition that has absolutely nothing to do with the true celebration of this season, but we participate nonetheless. It’s a delightful craft filled with joy and creativity.
And GADS of stress!
I’m having a moment of confession here.
I hate dying Easter Eggs.
Really….in an “I would rather have to clear my yard of dog poop than dye eggs” sort of relationship.
I’m a crafty mom. I’m into collages and crayons, paints and playdoh. We bake cookies and go on nature walks to get crafty with later. But the truth is that Easter egg dying makes my insides almost physically cringe.
5 cups of lovely colors in a group. And a small hand begging to get started creeps into the photograph from below. It’s a dance really. The “WAIT!!!, Mommy MUST help you” with the pulling back to allow small hands to create for themselves.
And every tiny bump of a cup or brush of a carefully rolled up sleeve sends my heart racing.
It’s the beckon of a spill… the welled-up potential of catastrophe… the lingering feeling that this will be the year that the carpet is stained beyond repair or that their matching shirts will become a smattering of ill-intended tie-dying. But the joy in their faces between the shoving to use first the blue dye and then the red one somehow keeps me coming back annually for more.
Despite the fact that a mere 45 seconds in, the unthinkable happens….
And it’s the red one….pouring over the edge of the table onto the seat of a chair that thankfully needs to be recovered anyhow.
I’m thankful in that moment that 3 layers of protection separate my 3 year old’s clothing from the streaming liquid. Two layers soak through with hot pink vinegar-tinged water. I rush to stop the trail to the floor…and then I do what any reasonable person does…I snap a picture!
We finish with the 4 remaining colors, and I feel my chest pumping hard until all of the dye is where it rightfully belongs…down the sink.
And I remind myself most thankfully that this isn’t what I’m celebrating now anyway. That the fresh red stain on my chair has more to do with a blood soaked brow on a cross for me than it does a stickered and colorful egg. And despite the stress of this horrid craft, I find my mind lingering on the stains of my own life, that because of my Jesus have been wiped clean.
Suddenly, I’m struck by the thought that the huge stains of my life are easier to wipe away than the ones on my chair.
Purge me with hyssop, and I shall be clean;
wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow.
Let me hear joy and gladness;
let the bones that you have broken rejoice.
Hide your face from my sins,
and blot out all my iniquities.
Create in me a clean heart, O God,
and renew a right spirit within me.
Cast me not away from your presence,
and take not your Holy Spirit from me.
Restore to me the joy of your salvation,
and uphold me with a willing spirit.
~ Psalm 51:7-12
And when they came to the place that is called The Skull, there they crucified him, and the criminals, one on his right and one on his left. And Jesus said, “Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do.” And they cast lots to divide his garments. And the people stood by, watching, but the rulers scoffed at him, saying, “He saved others; let him save himself, if he is the Christ of God, his Chosen One!” The soldiers also mocked him, coming up and offering him sour wine and saying, “If you are the King of the Jews, save yourself!” There was also an inscription over him, “This is the King of the Jews.” – Luke 23:33-38