Easter’s Expectant Playfulness – Ignatian Spirituality

When my kids have been youthful, we used to go to the Easter Vigil Mass. As a outcome, Easter morning was at residence. The Easter Bunny visited the night time earlier than and left not solely an Easter basket with sweet and small toys, but in addition eggs hidden round the home. As the Bunny had achieved for me, he left one egg for every baby with the kid’s title written on it in wax crayon earlier than being adorned. The different eggs have been up for grabs, however solely you have been allowed to search out your personal egg, the one particularly crafted and adorned for you. This custom maybe unintentionally handed on a Scriptural notion: “I have called you by name; you are mine.” (Isaiah 43:1) Jesus is aware of every one in every of us by title. Jesus calls every one in every of us to be his beloved. God as Creator can also be the mum or dad of every one in every of us and loves every particular person as a toddler is liked: by title, uniquely, deserving of particular and hidden items.

One yr after each of our kids had left for faculty, there was an Easter basket for his or her return residence however no egg hunt. We figured that our 18-yr-outdated had outgrown the custom and would now not have an interest. We have been fallacious. “Why are there no hidden eggs?”

It solely took one take a look at his face for me to understand that at all ages, we wish the prospect to be a toddler once more, the prospect to play. At an egg hunt, we play expectantly, looking out with the assumption that the items are there to be discovered.

The celebration of Easter as a liturgical season extends nicely past Easter Sunday. One means to stick with the 50-day season is to learn the post-Resurrection encounters that the Gospel authors report and to think about: Where do I discover myself in these tales?

In many of those narratives, Jesus speaks the names of his pals. Jesus says, “Mary,” to Mary of Magdala, and that’s how she acknowledges him (John 20:16). When Jesus and Peter reconnect after breakfast on the seaside, Jesus asks, “Simon, son of John, do you love me?” (21:15) To a gaggle of disciples fishing, he asks, “Children, have you caught anything to eat?” (21:5)

I’m particularly intrigued by that final title, “children,” as a result of it jogs my memory of the ways in which it’s usually simpler for us to hook up with God once we are extra like kids: open-hearted, spontaneous, able to go attempting to find God’s items, and able to be stunned by God. God is the one who acts, and we obtain God’s items, however to be receptive, we additionally have to have an angle of expectant playfulness. Maybe it’s an angle of searching for the great in others at our subsequent social gathering. Maybe it’s being looking out for wildlife on a nature stroll. Maybe it’s specifically adorning Easter eggs for our grownup kids or different grownup members of the family. Maybe it’s being playful with God in prayer and figuring out God might be playful with us in return.

This Easter, I’m interested by discovering God in all issues as akin to enterprise a treasure hunt. Although there may be a lot struggling on this planet, we’re invited not solely to await the God who calls us by title, but in addition to go attempting to find the divine and count on God to point out up, as a result of, the truth is, God is already there. Like the Easter eggs hidden round the home, God has items with our names already written on them. Perhaps the best present is recognizing that within the moments of God’s ongoing self-revealing, we’re reminded that God is basically there and ready for us to be childlike sufficient to search out and be discovered.

Image by NickyPe from Pixabay.

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