Easter is celebrated in many different ways. Communities will often hold egg-hunts. Many malls will have the Easter Bunny visit for pictures with children. Churches will hold special services.

The church to which I belong is among those which hold a special sunrise service on Easter Sunday. It is usually held at the home of one of our members whose house sits on a hill with the backyard facing east. We gather on the back porch that spreads across nearly the entire length of the home where we can see the sun rise as our pastor delivers a message.

We usually are reminded of the reason Christian believers celebrate Easter – the resurrection of Jesus Christ. It is a message of redemption and hope. We are urged to consider the cross and the sufferings of Christ. Then we are reminded the blood he shed was for each of us – to pay the price of our sin.

We may think first responders who risk their lives for strangers are brave. We’d be right to do so. Yet, Jesus willingly sacrificed himself, not for strangers, but knowing full well the darkness that lurks in the heart of man – not only as a collective, but in each of us individually. He died to set us free from sin.

I have always enjoyed the Easter sunrise service. It’s good to be vividly reminded of the basic tenets of our belief. Without the resurrection, there is no point to the Christian faith. Spring may be a time of renewed life, but Easter brings new and eternal life.

This Easter Sunday, I will once again watch the sunrise with my church family and celebrate the Son-rise that took place over 2,000 years ago.

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