Monday, March 28, 2011

My favorite Easter idea

Last week, I tasted a bit of the holy.

Not often do we get those chances in life. But I tried a project, and it became so much more.

Immeasurably more.

It's shocking that all I did was make one choice to step out. Try something new. A lot of times, my ideas don't work. They don't flesh out like I imagined. People are whining, hungry, get the idea. Not exactly what was pictured on the magazine page where everyone is sitting so...very...still.

But on occasion, an idea becomes out-of-the-blue magical.

On one of my new favorite blogs, Contented Sparrow, I saw this idea for making an Easter Garden. Lo and behold, Megan lifted it from my favoritest Ann at A Holy Experience and this post from 2009. Ann called it a visual parable. I was mesmerized.

And my giant giant giant pot was empty.

After school pickup, we drove straight to the garden store. It was sprinkling, but under the umbrella, I had two helpers fluttering with excitement about making our garden. Everyone got to choose some miniature plants. Everyone anticipated the planting of something special.

Creating with hands in fresh soil brought focus, life coursing through little plants brought gentleness. Even the rock path was laid carefully.

Truth-planting and life planting all at once. All life hinging on truth. Life sustained by the very breath of truth.

"I am the way, the truth, and the life."  
John 14:6

At first it seems that the way leads to emptiness. A tomb lies hungry for death. A prickly cactus at the end of the path reminds us of pain, the so very great cost.

But water in our pond reflects hope. 
“If you only knew the gift God has for you and who you are speaking to, you would ask me, and I would give you living water.”  John 4:10

The garden awaits.

On Palm Sunday, we'll read the greatest story every told, we'll light candles along the rock path, and wait for Him, eager and burdened with a debt we cannot pay.

On Good Friday, the candles will not be lit.  We'll read about the darkness and the earthquake. And His words.

“Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing.”
Luke 23:34

Jesus will be wrapped in a cloth and laid in the tomb. Men will stand guard, as if they could contain Life. Saturday too the path stays dark.

But Sunday, Easter Sunday, now that day makes all the difference.

The stone will be rolled away.

The cloth will lie vacant.

And we will celebrate freedom.

Looking at our Easter Garden every day as I walk past makes me long for Him. The empty scene is merely a reminder of my empty condition without Him. But a promise is also rooting deep.

For the next month, we'll watch the thyme and succulents grow, and feel the promise of Life swell within our hearts.

"For God loved the world so much that He gave..."
John 3:16

ADDED: To see what happened in our Easter Garden one month later, on Good Friday, click here.



  1. oh i completely am in love with this. you are amazing friend

  2. I had seen this over there. What a neat idea! Im a very visual person and I think this would help kids really grasp the concept well! Itd also be a great idea to do with my Sunday School & kids church classes!
    Have a wonderful Monday friend:)

  3. What a lovely, profound project! :)

  4. I really really love this idea....and the lego guys totally complete the garden!! Thats wonderful you let the kids put their own touch on the project. You are a great momma!!!

    totally lovely!!


  5. this is beautiful in so many ways.

  6. i always love reading your insight, leslie. this is a touching, inspirational post; thank you!!

  7. wow thats beautiful. so want to do that when i have bigger little ones someday. sooo good!!

  8. amazing, leslie! what a beautiful visual

  9. That is such a great idea...and a great reminder! :)

  10. this is so cute and great and i just got the are an exquisite writer leslie!!

  11. Ahh, this is so cute! I have been wanting to do a little garden vignette for a while now! Soon as the weather gets warmer.

  12. oh! it turned out so great! the cactus...perfect! the legos..hee...also perfect! so glad you've discovered a new tradition.

  13. i love, love , love this post. I am a new follower. Just beautiful. Thank you for the inspiration.

  14. Wow, this is simply amazing. Beautiful. I just so happen to have a big empty pot myself.

  15. what a great idea, leslie! i'm thankful we have 3 big pots out back - a perfect spring break project! :)

  16. Oh I love this idea so much! I must remember it for next Easter!

  17. leslie, this is fantastic!
    this is just what we will be doing this good friday.