The six Sundays are not counted among the forty days of Lent because each Sunday represents a “mini-Easter” – a celebration of Jesus’ victory over sin and death.
“For as the earth brings forth its bud,
As the garden causes the things that are sown in it to spring forth,
So the Lord God will cause righteousness and praise to spring forth before all the nations.”
— ISAIAH 61:11 (NKJV)
Ann Voskamp, author of One Thousand Gifts: A Dare to Live Fully Right Where You Are, has shared her experience of making an Easter garden which she has cleverly called ‘A Visual Parable.’ Ann initiated her journal entry with these thoughts:
“Our beginning, and our mortal fall, began in a garden.
Christ’s beginning to right that fall began in a garden, passion anguish dripping great drops of blood.
Our new beginning began in a garden, stone rolled away to that echoing tomb, shroud whispering in the wind.”
For today’s celebration, let’s give praise for the new beginning that has emerged through Christ’s sacrifice by creating our own visual parable, which will provide, as Ann adds, “a miniature remembering of the grief of old beginning, the dazzling wondering of new beginnings.”
Family Craft – Plant an Easter Garden
Step 1 – Fill a round, shallow planter with soil.
Step 2 – Lay out a path of stones leading to the ‘tomb,’ which can be a simple arrangement of three rocks.
Step 3 – Insert a small cup into the soil to hold the water for the pond.
Step 4 – Add plants, a cactus or two and moss, as desired.
Ann offers these final instructions for making your Easter Garden: A Visual Parable complete:
“Come Palm Sunday, we’ll plant some seeds, resurrection hope in the dark of the earth, and line the path with smalls candles, miniature garden torches, for the Light is coming. And we’ll begin the path and each day light another wick… until Good Friday, when all went dark.
And in the evening of Good Friday, the children will shape a caterpillar out of modeling wax, swath it in a small square of silk, tuck it in the moss outside the grotto with stone over the entrance….
On Saturday, we’ll remember and we’ll wait.
Come Sunday, Easter morn early, in first light dawning, we’ll roll back the tomb, see only the husk of silk left behind, a butterfly a light in the branches of tree over the Tomb and we too will ask, “Why do you seek the living among the dead?” (LUKE 24:5) He is alive!
This is our week to walk the path from Lent to Easter, from dark to Light, from cocoon confinement to conquering in Christ and the Easter garden will unfold, a parable, a living visual of the metamorphosis of all the cosmos.”