A Wife Loved Like The Church

I didn’t go to church on Easter morning

Posted on: April 5, 2010

Instead I went for a run.

That might be shocking, being a Christian and not going to church on a Sunday morning. Especially Easter Sunday. The Sunday of all Sundays. But I didn’t go.

While I was running a car passed me. Before I even saw it I could hear it. The driver had blown their tire. You know that sound. Thump, thump, thump against pavement. As they passed I noticed they pulled into the neighborhood church lot. Perfect. If you’re going to have a flat tire, at least have it in a church parking lot.

As I got closer to the lot, I spotted the car and it’s driver. A girl in her early twenties. As she stood looking at the shredded tire it didn’t take me long to realize that she had no clue what to do. I keep running and watching. One couple walked by. Then another. And another. No one was stopping. Finally someone did. Then they left. As I was coming parallel to the car I thought “I need to stop and help her”. I ran down the small hill to the lot and asked if she needed some help. She responded “yes”. After a brief exchange, I got her spare out of the car and told her to go inside since the service was about to start.

Now imagine if you will – a sweaty (remember, I’d been running), tattooed woman in shabby clothes in a church parking lot changing a tire on Easter. What better image of a person in need? What better image of someone Christ died for?  But in the 20-some-odd minutes it took me to change the tire, not one person helped. In fact, several people walked right past without so much as a word or nod. At one point, I made eye contact with a young 30-something man who was looking for a parking space. As soon as we made eye contact he quickly drove off. And it hit me:

Church is more important than Christ.

As Christians we can put the focus on the wrong things. We put our focus on church attendance. We put our focus on not stepping on toes. We put our focus on skirting around the real issues.  We put our focus on seeing someone in need and justifying why we can’t help. “I can’t help because I’d get dirty. I can’t help because if they needed it they’d ask. I can’t help because then I’d be late. I can’t help because I’m not ‘called to that’.”

It’s very easy for me to judge these people. To think that I am better than them. But I’m not. How many times have I seen someone in need and not helped? How many times have I made an excuse?

In Luke 5, Jesus eats with a group of sinners at the home of Matthew (a tax collector). The Pharisees are appalled by this action. Jesus responses to them: “Healthy people don’t need a doctor – sick people do. I have come to call not those who think they are righteous, but those who know they are sinners and need to repent.” (Luke 5:31-32, NLT)

By the time I finished changing the tire, I left praising God. I praised God for His forgiveness. I praised God for His grace. I praised God for His love and mercy. I praised God for taking a moment of my life and teaching me more about Himself. Easter is not about church. Easter is not about eggs or candy. Easter isn’t even about family and friends. Easter is about Christ. Easter is the pinnacle moment in our Christian faith. It is the moment that signifies our right standing and reconnection to God through Christ. Easter is when we realize – we’re sick and need a doctor and Christ is that doctor.


10 Responses to "I didn’t go to church on Easter morning"

Well said, my friend!!

Excellent! And next you’ll get ’em babe. You’ll finish that run you started. Thank you for your servant heart. There are not many women that are as bold and courageous as you!

Amen! Thank you for these words Sarah! Too many times we all focus on the wrong thing… we miss it. The point, goal, & standard is Christ & Him alone… not any of our actions/inactions. This convicted me, it’s ALWAYS about loving/serving like Him. Love ya!

What an awesome post. Good words.

Thanks for sharing my tattoo mommy friend 😉

Very encouraging. Thanks for sharing not only the story but how God spoke to your heart through it.

Thank you for your post and for stopping! I would have no idea how to change a tire!!

WOW!!! As a pastor, I am floored by this post. Not suprised, but convicted, both on my behalf and on my church’s behalf.

Thanks for your honesty and conviction to say the right things!

i was out runnin on the streets on easter too! 🙂 Thanks for this post.. wonderfully said!

What a story, thanks for sharing!

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