Jesus is alive!

frozenHow do get people to think about the events of the first Easter? This year, I went for talking about the film Frozen…! And by using an piñata in the shape of an Easter egg. It seemed to work!

The reading was Bob Hartman’s retelling of the events of the first Easter in The Storyteller’s Bible, based on Matthew 28:1-10.

Easter sermon 2014

Jesus is alive! Jesus is alive and that changes everything. Because Jesus is alive nothing is the same ever again.

Who’s seen the film Frozen? What happens?
Elsa and Anna are sisters. Elsa has the power to create snow and ice.
But, Elsa uses her powers with fear and without love. And because she uses her powers in anger she ends up freezing the whole kingdom. And she’s so scared about what she’s done that she runs off. She runs off leaving the whole kingdom freezing.
Only an act of true love can rescue Elsa and the whole kingdom.
So, Anna bravely goes to rescue her sister, has adventures, is betrayed, but eventually, through an unexpected act of true love, the kingdom is freed and love wins.

A rescue, a betrayal, an unexpected act of true love which frees the kingdom.
That’s what we are celebrating at Easter.
A rescue, a betrayal, an unexpected act of true love which frees the kingdom.
Jesus’ death and rising to new life have rescued not just us, but the whole of God’s creation.
God’s creation, everything that he made, needed rescuing, rescuing from pain and hurt and death.

The unexpected act of true love was Jesus, God’s son, being born as a human, a person, growing up, telling and showing people about God’s love and God’s kingdom, and then being killed. Being killed, dying, but being brought back to life again by God, to open up the way for us and for all of God’s creation to come back to him.

Or, here’s another way of thinking about it:
Hands up who has had an Easter egg? Hands up who has already eaten one of their Easter eggs?
What do you have to do to eat an Easter egg? You have to break it.
So let’s do that! <break the piñata egg!>

Eggs have to be broken to let new life out. Jesus had to die to be raised to new life, and so that we all could have new life and so that the whole of creation could have the chance of a new beginning. Things have to break and die for new life to be released. So let’s hand round the chocolate.

And as we eat the chocolate, let’s thank God for his unexpected act of true love that rescues us and rescues the whole world. Like Elsa let’s use our gifts with love. Like Anna let’s have the determination and courage to carry on. And like Olaf the snowman, let’s discover that our future is more amazing than we can imagine.

Because God’s unexpected act of true love doesn’t end with Jesus being alive. Because Jesus is alive, God sends the Holy Spirit to help us, to be with us, to help us to use our gifts with love. God sends us the Holy Spirit to help us have the courage and determination to carry on. God sends us the Holy Spirit to help us use our gifts to show God’s love to the whole of his creation. And God sends us the Holy Spirit to help us discover that our future is more amazing that we can imagine.

Why? Because Alleulia! Christ is Risen. He is risen indeed. Alleulia!

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