"This is the first day." Sure, Sunday was the beginning of a new week and the beginning of the Easter season and the beginning of Spring. But it was not just that, not at all just that.
"This is the first day," our pastor said at least five times in his sermon Sunday.
He said it like he was announcing a baby's first breath or a rocket's first flight, like there was a definite and precise time of origin and there was not anything like day before that day. Like, perhaps, when the first dawn broke the first day as God breathed life out of nothing.
When Christ rose from the dead, everything changed... forever. Everything, forever changed. History and future and eternity and the way the sunlight presently stretches across my morning routine. Sunday would have been the first day of a new work week for the Jewish people, but all work was different on this new "first" day, in light of the resurrection.
We are living in the light of an empty tomb - on the sky side of a conquered grave.
That is why we spread the feast table in Prospect Park on Sunday and gathered friends and broke bread and said grace and joyfully remembered together our redemption. We are on the sky side of a conquered grave with Jesus.
As if that wasn't reason enough to celebrate on Sunday, Patrick decided it would be another first. He thought that Easter was the most appropriate time to make this special invitation because of the way every feast and marriage and celebration is wrapped up inside the immeasurable blessing of salvation.
At the end of a long day of celebrating, Patrick asked me to be his bride and it is making me the happiest little Midwestern Brooklyn girl you have ever seen.
It took a while for the shock to wear off (when I say I had no idea it was coming, I mean like you would be surprised if those big check people showed up at your door). Of course, I was hoping it would happen in the future, but I was not expecting it Sunday when we could share the joy with my brother and sister-in-law who were visiting... which is probably why our excitement turned into silly dancing in my living room.
And now, this. I am engaged! I have a fiance! I am going to marry my best friend!
The sweet beauty of Easter just claimed a whole new piece of my heart. It's like knowing the best secret that I can tell everyone and like my rib cage is warm like the best whiskey. It's... sorry, words won't do at all here. Words just won't do to explain how wonderful it feels to step into love like this.
I'll spare you my mushy babble for now. I will just say that it seemed the best way to start this part of the journey - remembering the Bridegroom we anticipate together and the marriage feast He has prepared.
For now, we will enjoy "every good gift" the Lord pours out and we will enjoy it with all the zany delight those gifts deserve.