I told this story to the young people waiting to begin the Easter Egg hunt. I must say, for a group of children eager to find decorated eggs and candy, they were remarkably patient with the storyteller! They even posed for a photo.
You’re all here to hunt for Easter eggs that have been scattered around the church grounds. And what a lovely sunny morning it is to do it!
Some those eggs might look familiar, if you were here yesterday and part of the group that dyed them all these wonderful colors. These are real, cooked eggs. If you crack one open, well, you’ll find lunch.
You know, you make it into egg salad?
Some of them, though, are brightly colored, but not because they were dyed by people yesterday. Their color got molded right into the plastic. And I’m told that if you open the plastic eggs, you might find something sweet inside…
Money? Well, I don’t think these eggs will have money in them. Chocolate, now: that’s a real possibility.
On the first Easter, they didn’t go on an Easter egg hunt. Instead, some of Jesus’ friends went on a kind of Jesus hunt. That’s sort of like an Easter egg hunt, but a lot simpler. There was only one place to look, and that was the place where he’d been buried on Friday, after he’d died on the cross.
What turned it into a Jesus hunt was that he wasn’t there any longer. That’s unusual. Most people, when they die and are buried, tend to stay in the same place.
Easter eggs, now they can be anywhere. And suddenly it turned out that Jesus could be anywhere, too, except for the one place that they’d been certain he’d be. He had been dead, but he was no longer dead. He had been buried, but he was buried no longer. He had been in a grave, but now the grave was empty.
So a Jesus hunt was a pretty amazing one to do.
And it’s still something you and I can do. Jesus said that he pays attention to how people treat one another. In fact, he said that when you treat pretty much any person well, you’re treating Jesus well.
So: After you’re done hunting for Easter eggs, try going on something of a Jesus hunt yourself. Go looking for someone that you’d like to treat as well as you’d like to treat Jesus.
It won’t be hard. There’s a lot of people in the world, and there’s some Jesus in every single one of them.
Be good to them, and you’ll have found Jesus. Be good to them, and Jesus will smile.
Have a good time!