On Thursday a group of us headed down to Redland’s Education Centre to participate in their Easter Trail. We are exploring ideas and approaches that would help us present the story of Christmas and Easter in even more accessible ways for our culture and setting. It was great, we got to follow Peter’s journey from the sea of Galillee to the empty tomb – after bumping into him and agreeing to help him retrace his steps in an effort to find some notes he had been writing about said journey.
It was inspiring – five emotive, beautifully creative, sensory sets. We each joined a different group of 10 kids who were taken round by a story teller. On each set we heard the story and were helped to reflect on our own experience of trust, betrayal, self sacrifice, disillusionment and more.
What struck me this time in a fresh way, is that the Easter story is a deeply dark and violent story. (The crew at Redlands did a great job at making it child apropriate – not an easy task!) At the end there is celebration, but not before gross injustice, betrayal, violent riots, abandonment, abuse of power, mob insanity, torture, blood, pain, execution, grief, acute stress; all punctuated by acts of devotion, a meal with friends, sleeping on the job, a pesky slave girl and a cockerel. But there it is, that is the story, however tempting to get away from it, such was the ransom paid by our kinsman redeemer so that you and I could know God again if we want to.