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Easter, Might You Linger A Bit Longer?

April 2, 2013

On Easter morning I awoke weary from being sick. That awful kind of sick that makes you want to meet Jesus rather than battle through to get well.

I prayed for my friends battling health issues that won’t end in a couple of days. My heart aching on their behalf, I begged for them mercy and relief and healing.

Then I put pen to paper to let my soul find its personal place with this year’s Resurrection Day.

And I’m still writing. Slowly. Reflectively.

I know what glorious, glorious things this Holy Day says to the world at large.

But what does Jesus want me to know, to think about, to wrestle through this time? This season of new beginnings? I don’t think Easter is quite done with me yet.

So, I’m lingering here for a bit longer.

I feel like the girl who wears the same outfit to school two days in a row. Easter is a bit done now. Time to put it back in the closet. Only for me it isn’t. I want to wear it again today, tomorrow, and many more tomorrows.

After all, Easter is no longer a ritual to me. It’s a revelation. A time where Jesus splits my soul along the fault line of a scar deep within. I was an unwanted child to my birth dad.


But to Jesus… I was wanted so much that He gave His life for me. It feels so personal. Even though I know God “so loved the world, He gave His son,” it becomes very individual if we let it.

Be personal.

With Jesus.


So, in the midst of a world all putting Easter away, might we let it sit with us for just a bit more?

I keep my Bible open to the place where the angel spoke to the women at the tomb. And I tangle my prayers around His Words from Matthew 28:

“Do not be afraid,”- God, I hand over to You those things that make me so afraid. Resurrect the parts of my faith squelched by fear.

“I know you are looking for Jesus,”- God, when my soul is searching help me know the answer to every longing can be found in You.

“He has risen,”- God, the fact that Jesus is risen should lift my head, my heart, and my attitude. Help me to live today as if I really believe this with every part of my life.

“just as he said,”- Jesus, You keep Your promises. Help me live as though I believe that with every part of me. Help me trust You more, obey You more, and resemble You more.

“Come and see,”- Jesus, You had the angels invite the women in to see for themselves that You had risen. You invite me into these personal revelations everyday. Forgive me that I sometimes rush about and forget to come and see for myself… You, Your Word, Your insights.

“Then go quickly and tell his disciples,”- Jesus, I don’t want to be a secret keeper with my faith. I want to be a bold and gracious truth proclaimer. For You. With You. Because of You. Me, the unwanted girl who You loved, redeemed, and wanted.

In Jesus’ Name.

Yes, let this miraculous Easter be personal. And prayerful. And linger a bit longer.

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  1. Esther

    Yes! I want to just sit and soak all that God had for me this Easter as well.
    Thanks for putting the idea out there. 🙂

  2. Stefanie Aldrich

    Lysa, thank you for this confirmation. I too have not been able to put Easter away so quickly this year. As I read the accounts of Jesus from Passover to His rising, I was reminded how the story didn’t end there. That for 40 days He stayed and talked with His Disciples. It made me think what would my life look like if for the next 40 days I intentionally invited Him to stay to teach, lead and prepare me. Thank you for being obedient and letting me know it’s not a crazy whim, but what a child seeking the face of her Savior looks like.

  3. Kathy

    I was amazed when this post came in just now. I have had lingering thoughts this year, too, about what it is exactly that Jesus did on the cross. I’ve been reflecting about what it means to me personally. And, I have felt the nudge to dig deeper, get closer to Jesus — to know him more intimately.

    I am aware again this year of what the Lord saved me from, of the pit of addiction and darkness he pulled me out of. His love reached down into the ugliness that had become my reality and He refused to let me wallow in it where I was likely to have died. But, Jesus said no to that. I am so grateful. And, in the past seven years He has faithfully brought me out of the pain and brokenness of that place. He is restoring the years the locusts ate, and as I walk into the promises, my gratitude grows deeper each year. I feel as if I am on the verge of a greater knowledge of the depth of His love — the enormity of it — and am in awe. He seems to be asking me to come closer, to walk nearer, be comfortable in intimacy. I’m excited and humbled that the God of all creation wants me to know Him.

  4. Donna Jackson

    I’m struggling with knowing my RA won’t end in a couple of days, months or even years. But God … yes, once again, God is showing me that His resurrection power within me needs a struggle to set it into motion. So, split open my heart tomb and let my struggle continue if it means setting my spirit free to breathe on the walking dead! But, God, I’d really like to learn to do it with a smile on my face!!!
    Thanks, Lisa, for your post. I’m still letting God chisel.

  5. Regina Richardson

    Thank you so much for this. It says everything I have been feeling – I want to totally trust, believe, have faith, not worry – all of those things that Christ calls us to do. I’m getting better, but have so much further to go!! THANK YOU!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  6. Cathy

    That’s one of the things I love about being Catholic! Easter isn’t just a day, but a season that lasts 50 days until Pentecost. It’s way too big to be contained and pondered for just a day. Our Easter Season mass readings continue to put the resurrection story in front of us – in fact the very passage you quoted above was yesterday’s gospel reading.

  7. Linda

    I agree! I don’t want Easter to go away. This has been an especially tender time for my husband and me since our son moved out for the wrong reasons. I tracked every day with Jesus last week from miracles to sacrificial death to glorious Resurrection! I was so immersed in the Holy Week, events, and looking forward to Sunday so much. To every person I encountered Easter Sunday I said: “He is risen!” Most agreed, but one lone clerk at Scheetz just kinda smirked and said nothing. I walked out not knowing what he meant by saying nothing. It really wasn’t an acknowledgement, just a ok, leave me alone with that Jesus stuff. And now, on to Spring and moving away from the sensitivity that Easter brings and that comes from knowing Jesus is not in the tomb but on the right hand of the Father interceding for me and all believers. Pretty awesome way to move on!

  8. Li

    Thank you Lysa, thank you for sharing your heart, thank you for sharing your personal time with the Lord. My heart is still here too, in Easter, in His resurrection, and the new life He is bringing each new hour, each new day, each new year. To Him be the glory…draw me nearer dear Lord..

  9. Kate

    I am a new follower of your wisdom and inspiration at a time in my life when my heart and soul are so hungry for hope. My husband has decided that our marriage is over after 14 years. We battled infertility, financial difficulties, multiple military deployments…and more.. We just adopted a baby little more than a year ago. Now he is done. I don’t know how to accept this and move on. The letting go is tearing my heart in two. And I can’t seem to feel God. I feel so alone.

    Thank you for sharing your faith. Your words speak to my heart daily. I am going to take those Easter words of Jesus and write them in my prayer journal and reflect on them in light of my circumstances and seek Him.

    If you have any advice for healing this broken heart I would truly appreciate it.

    • Laurie

      Kate – my heart lept for you. Reading your words touched a chord. I’ve been through the same but different. Your heart it so sore it almost can’t beat. Your head whirls. Your body aches. And your mind screams “why?”. Talk to God – I know that sounds a bit simple compared to the difficulties – but He knows. He knows what happened before and what is happening now. The God of the mountain is the God of the valley. He cares for you. He will listen – even when you are angry or bitter or confused. IF I could give “advice” it would be to move from the feelings – the not feeling God and the feeling of being all alone – and move into trust. It is not easy. The trust, true trust, takes the burden off you and puts in on the Shoulders able to bear it – God’s. I started by looking up every verse about trust. I then picked about 10 that spoke to me. I wrote them out in an easy to read format on index cards and put them around the house. One above the sink to read while washing up, one in the bathroom, one in the car for red lights, one on my dresser…well, you get it. The constant reminder of what God’s Word says – which we know is the truth and will not return void – girds you up. Pray them, claim them – memorize them! The second “advice” is to be thankful. I don’t mean be thankful for what happend, but other aspects. Try to find 5 new things to be thankful for every day. Write them in your prayer journal. The spirit of a thankful heart and the praise resulting move you in a positive direction. Oh Kate – I know it is going to be hard. I am thankful that you, and I, don’t have to go it alone. The Lord keep you.

  10. Crystal

    Wow! I’ve been feeling the same way this Easter. I woke up at 3:48 am Easter morning rembering a dream I had. I won’t recount it here but it definitely left an impression, so much so that I woke up praying “our Father, who art in Heaven….”. And the fact that I woke up around the time between “completion and new beginnings” as Pastor Steven mentioned…I don’t think the dream, the time, or anything else are a coincidence.

  11. Terri

    All I know is that at sunrise, the Son rose! Hallelujah, because this world becomes less my home every day. I hardly recognize it anymore.

  12. Diane

    This Easter has been special in that it is the first Easter without my son who passed away unexpectedly in January. He was a child of God who wanted everyone to know the joy of being a Christian and serving God. We miss him so very much and reflect on his life and the life of Jesus while he was on earth and what he did for us at the Cross if only we trust him as our Savior. Thank you for your reminders of how we look to our Lord for daily guidance in our walk with Him.

  13. Kate

    I had left a response here and now it is gone. Did I say something wrong?

  14. Jennifer

    Thanks for posting this – I have been struggling as I am pregnant with a child (A girl!!) that the father asked me to terminate and it has been on my mind so much this last week how she is ‘unwanted’ and he will never be a part of her life. This is so encouraging to hear to help put me at peace, as Jesus wants her – He died for all of us, including my unborn daughter, and I hope to reflect back on this and use it to help her want to have a relationship with Him and be redeemed by his love.

  15. Pam

    I was raised in a home that “looked” great. Emotionally I was abandoned orphan. So great is His love, I finally know I am His daughter. I love how gracious God is as we grow into our relationship with Him. Easter this year brought these thoughts together…………… ” breathe out and be still….what looks hopeless, that part of life where you find you’re at the end of your everything….remember the tomb is empty. No longer are we on our own to figure things out. He is enough, He already knows, He already sees the path. The tomb is empty. He’s our victory, our joy! Yes we sometimes have to wait….but His best comes.

  16. melissa

    Thanks for your post. I read it slowly and pondered it to let it soak in. I am on a quest to be more personal with Jesus too. Your thoughts are a great help as I journey to know Him better. Hope you are feeling much better today!

  17. Celeste Vaughan

    AMEN Lysa! The fact that Jesus died on the cross to cover our horrible sins and then rose again to make us have a chance at wholeness needs to be celebrated EVERY DAY OF THE YEAR! Thank you for this reminding me Lysa! 🙂

  18. Julia

    Everyday is Easter for those of us who are in the Lord. we have that hope, that confidence that Jesus is always with us, that love that sent Jesus to the cross, the peace and joy of the Lord that Jesus promised to us in the midst of our circumstances. Everyday is a day to rejoice and sing the Lord’s praises!

  19. veronica

    Awsome Lysa. I love it. Thanks. Happy Easter;)

  20. Esther

    Oh, how this spoke to me today! Divorce is years behind me, but sometimes that thought of being “unwanted” seeks to find a place to hang out. Thank you, Lisa.

  21. Nancy

    Thank you! God Bless!

  22. Kay

    Your message so hits home for me, too. I feel that my life has been in utter turmoil for the past 4 years or so. I have been a Christian for many,many years and God has been with me through so many ups and downs. I truthfully know and have seen Him in action. But it is only recently that I am realizing just what my Heavenly Father has done for me. Once again I find myself in the midst of tremendous burdens…almost enough to make me just throw in the towel. But, with Christ’s help through wonderful people like you, Lysa, I feel I am closer to Him than ever and fully believe His promises. I KNOW He will”never leave or forsake me” and will always provide…in His perfect timing. Through faith and His Presence I will once again get through this valley and the climb to the highest mountain. So yes, I want to have Easter in my heart all year long. Thank you Lysa and dear Lord for putting these women in my life. It is a glorious fact that “He definitely has risen!” Please pray for me on my continuing journey that I may follow God’s path for me and be a spiritual influence for others. 🙂

  23. Misty

    Thank you for sharing. I too, can relate to being an unwanted child. The child that was conceived so an underage mother could be with this ‘man’ and when that didn’t work, I was an inconvenience. So yes, Jesus laying down his life for me out of pure love, is very personal. He thought I was worth it when no one else did.

  24. Rebecca Portteus

    It is amazing the revelations we get when reading the Word! Thank you for sharing your Easter with us.

  25. Lisa

    Thanks for this post. . I to was unwanted by my birth father. Thankfully I know a Heavenly Father who loves me, wants me and has redeemed me for His own. It’s wonderful that for the Christian, Easter doesn’t end. The world celebrates one day, but we can celebrate his birth, death and resurrection daily. What a privilege we have to be able to gather together each Sunday to worship our Saviour. Your books, studies and posts have been such a blessing. May The Lord continue to bless you.

  26. Micki

    My church celebrates 50 days of Easter…acknowledging that we are an “Easter People” by remaining standing (instead of kneeling) during the Eucharist portion of Mass. I want to rest in peace and joy this season and not focus on the darkness…only on the Light.

  27. Lisa

    Thank you and Gog bless you Lysa!
    This has been a season of struggling for me as well as my husband. I have fibromyalgia, and stress just seems to ignite the fibro flare ups. Just before Christmas we found out my husband had kidney failure and due to that he lost his job. We spend just about every day at the hospital, and some days I feel like I’m having a nervous breakdown. The one thing I do to keep me somewhat sane is to remember all the things Jesus has done for me in the past, and knowing that He can will be there for us in this time of great need and suffering.
    My father didn’t want me either, but my TRUE Heavenly Father loved me before I was born! Your words are very inspiring. Thank you my friend.

  28. Gwen S

    We can learn much from our friends in the liturgical community. Thank you all for being the keepers, for intentionally holding up the Light of Easter a bit longer than do those of us in non-liturgical contexts. He is risen, indeed!

  29. Jayne Smith

    Isn’t wonderful that HE stayed 2000 years and counting to be with us, personally? Even when we marvel at his words for the nth time someone else is just discovering Him for the 1st time. Oh! How Wonderful, Oh! How marvelous! Savoring the Savior is such sweet joy.

  30. Amy Heirbrandt

    Beautiful!! Thank you so much for opening your life and heart to so many. These last two Easter’s, I have begun worshiping Christ by pouring my heart and mind into making an empty tomb for the children and curious adults to come and see that “He has risen, just as He said.” I am having trouble getting motivated to take it down this year. He keeps drawing me back to sit inside while listening and worshiping Him there. The more I dig into the intricate details God carved over time to reveal His Son, the more I treasure the image of the folded face cloth and empty grave clothes lying there abandoned by our risen Lord. He is risen! He is risen indeed!!

  31. Kay

    Thanks so much for sharing. Easter lives everyday in my heart. Happy Easter to you and your family. Thank you for what you do.

  32. Elizabeth

    Thank you so much for your post. It blessed me and I’m sure many others. I want to share an experience I had the Monday afternoon after the Sandy Hook shooting. I hope it will bless everyone who reads this. I was sitting by my picture window and right in front of me was a big white cloud with a dark cloud near it. The white cloud seemed very bright. I watched the white cloud as it moved near my church’s steeple with the silver cross. As I looked, I had the distinct feeling that the cloud was in the shape of Jesus kneeling and praying as He did at Gethsemane. I felt he was praying and interceding for us, particularly for children and the families that lost children and for all of us. I stared at it for about 5 minutes and felt at peace. It was very bright. When I closed my eyes afterwards I could still see light in my eyes. In the book of John, Jesus prayed for those of us who are in the future. I believe that He still prays and makes intercession for us. Blessings to everyone this Easter. Jesus is alive and He still cares for all of us, His children.

  33. Dalal

    This is such a beautiful and true message! Thank you, thank you, thank you!

  34. Patty Williams

    Thank you Lisa for your insights and the wisdom you have….I read the things you write and ask, what’s wrong with me…why can’t I find the verses of the greatest book come alive like that, as you did in this post….my husband says to me often, I’m a wise women…but not sure if I completely believe it….
    I know I am not alone…..that’s encouraging…is it comparing or a desire of something so deep to own….maybe I just need to linger longer…..


  35. Brenda

    Also, being abandoned by my birth father I know that pain. All I can say is Amen and Praise the Lord! Thank you God for the resurrection and being my Real Father.

  36. Ashley

    You read my heart. I found myself this year more serious about Easter and truly seeing Christ’s sacrifice as my redemption. I will let Easter linger with me. Thank you!

  37. mary mommy

    Lysa, your description of linger is so in tune with what I’ve been longing too. Thanks for these thouts. Hope you are feeling well soon love to

  38. Donna Thackston

    Wow! Lysa, you have such a blessed insight. Thank you for sharing. May God truly “hug” and bless you today. Keep on doing His work. Thank you…

  39. Jennifer

    My sister passed away unexpectedly in November of last year. The gut wrenching pain of losing my little sister has only been lessened by knowing she is with her Lord and Savior. However that still does not alleviate the hurt from missing her so. Every day since her passing has culminated in my aching to see her again. And then this past Easter weekend at our Good Friday service the verses in Matthew 27 were read. I had seen those verses hundreds of times before but never in light of suffering such great loss. And then I had such peace. Peace in knowing that my Savior’s sacrifice on that cross ensured that I will be with my sister again and there will be no pain, no hurt and no fear. Thank you Lysa for writing about wanting to extend the Easter spirit. Since Friday night I have not wanted the Easter celebration to end and you captured that feeling so beautifully in your post.

  40. Jill Beran

    Absolutely wonderful words!! Praying Easter will linger longer for me as well!! Thanks for sharing!

  41. Trish

    I love this so much I wrote the prayers for each section in my Bible in the margin of Matthew 28:5. Thank you for the reminder, for finding a way to live Easter every day and giving me something to go back to again and again.

  42. Holly @ the belle mere

    I love how you have turned the verses from Matthew into a sweet prayer. Like someone before me said, Easter is a season in the church, not just a day. But really, as Christians we live as Easter people. Every day can be Easter. Thanks for sharing.

  43. Martha T.

    I read your post and thought,”Wow!” I liked the way you prayed Scripture.

  44. katherine rae

    Child of the only KING, wanted by the only KING, loved by the only KING, saved by the only KING.

  45. Ruby

    This post is wonderful. It helped me pray to God about what was on my heart.

  46. Tristine Barry

    Thank you Lysa for your incredible insight and love for The Lord. I had an unusual Easter, somewhat. I took the days off to grieve, cry, study The Word, and spend incredible time with God. It was very moving in many ways.I was much more emotionally moved. I have been saved for three years now,Third Easter. Could it be that I am growing closer to God? Like Lysa,I want to continue just as it is Easter weekend. Remembering the crucifixion keeps me humble and reminds me of the treatment He had to endure, which makes me understand even more the depths of His love. He kept His eye on Eternity, and this immense, most incomprehensible unconditional love. Remembering the Resurrection is EVERYTHING.

    Thank you Lysa for the incredible idea.I am going to print this and apply it daily.

  47. Pauline

    Love this! I, too, belong to a church that recognizes both 40 days of Lent to prepare for Easter and then enjoys a season of Easter to let the reality of the resurrection permeate our being. 🙂 you’re so right that something as big as Easter should be celebrated more than just a few hours one Sunday morning!

  48. Jennifer

    Lysa, I always enjoy your posts. You are a wonderful writer and sharer of the things that God is doing in your life. However, as good as you are, this post was just excellent, great, beautiful, just… more. Thank you for sharing this with us!

  49. Erika

    Lysa, This is a good word! After a long week of taking care of my husband and children, who had the stomach flu, I ended up catching it too! I was worried that we weren’t going to be able to make it to Easter lunch with my family, for fear of spreading germs. But, realized that the flu was the least of everyone’s worries, when we received a call that my Grandpa went into the hospital the night before Easter.

    By the time Easter morning rolled around, we learned that things were not going well for him, and this was it! I couldn’t believe my ears! I wasn’t ready to let go of my grandpa yet! He was smart, and funny and a lot of other great qualities. Not to mention, he reminded me of my own father, who passed away 4 years ago (suddenly).

    There are still things I wanted to talk to my Grandpa about , and questions I wanted to ask him, but it was now too late! We rushed to the hospital, and by the time we got there, he had passed 15 minutes before. We were too late! “What kind of Easter is this?” I asked myself.

    Around the same time, I also learned about a good friend of mine, who has Lupus and just gave birth 3 weeks ago to a beautiful boy, was battling a big flare that is affecting her brain. This time the flare was affecting her speech and her vision. The doctors are unsure if the damage will be permanent. She was admitted to the hospital and is undergoing some very strenuous therapy. And yet she is trusting God that He has a plan much bigger than she realized. He wants to continue to use these difficult circumstances to form and refine her. She is keeping her son’s sweet face on her mind in order to keep going. This woman is someone I have always admired, and does not deserve an ounce of this struggle. I don’t think I could be half as brave as her!

    Wow! I have no idea how blessed I really! It really makes me realize that health is something I cannot take for granted! My sweet children are something that I cannot take for granted! My husband is someone I can not take for granted! My prayer is that God would open my heart and pour out his love. I want to feel His touch, and hear His voice! It has been a while since I have drawn close to Him, and I think now is the time! Because my family needs me to be more like Christ!

  50. Amber Smith

    Friday favorite charities! I love finding new organizations to partner with to bring the good news as well as clean water, health care, education and freedom from human trafficking. Make it happen girl woo woo!

  51. Sara

    Favorite home decor items/projects from Pinterest!

  52. Dana Quin

    I would love to see wall art!

  53. Tasha

    This was an adorable article! 🙂 I looooved the leopard shoes as I love leopard everything!! I should make a room full of all leopard things! Lol jk. In future Friday Favorites Articles I’d like to see……Favorite songs or cd choices of yours!! Favorite hair accessories!! (P.S. I’d love to win the Reedemed necklace 😉 hint hint lol)

  54. AbigaiL

    Thank you Lysa 🙂 I enjoyed reading your thoughts, which inspire and encourage me as well, to always take the time and always surrender more…praying to find Jesus deeper every single day. How lovely is our Savior!

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