Ups and Downs

Christians entered Holy Week yesterday with the triumphant sound of Palm Sunday.  I love the excitement of the music and the waving of the palms.  We're on a "high" as we recall Jesus' triumphant entrance.   The "high" continues the following Sunday as Christians celebrate the resurrection on Easter.  It's one big party of bunnies, colored eggs, chocolate candy and jellybeans.  There are decorations of flowers and everyone seems to be wearing something special and new.  (I would mention Easter bonnets, but does anyone wear a hat anyone?  Perhaps I am just an "old lady" but I think it would be really cool to see people dressed to the nines on Easter morning with hats and white gloves.)  From Sunday to Sunday it's one big happy party.

Except for the fact that it isn't.  In between the highs of Palm Sunday and Easter, we hit some real lows.  Holy week isn't just about two Sundays.  In between those two days there are some serious lows.  We should not forget:  the Last Supper, a betrayal, an arrest, a public flogging, a long, torturous walk, a painful crucifixion and death.  That's a lot of low in between two highs.  And the lows are just as important as the highs.

Christian or not, Holy week tells it like it is.  Life is NOT one big happy.  We all have our highs and lows.  We can't have happy without sad.  As much as we may not like it (and who really does?), we have to have sorrow and pain.  I don't know if it make the joy all that much sweeter (as some would say); I just know that life is not all happy, or all sad.  It's a pendulum that continually swings.  We all have highs and we all have lows.

This most obvious example of this in my mind is having a child.  For me there was a lot of pain and suffering when it came down to having a child.  My husband and I jumped through so many hoops.  And childbirth is certainly no picnic.  But the joy of holding our son for the first time.  The joy he continues to bring to us every day of our lives; it was certainly worth all the lows.  

And there are still plenty of lows while we raise our son.  There always will be.  There have to be. It is part of life.  We have to experience the difficulties in life.  Perhaps it makes us appreciate the joys all the more.  (Or maybe it doesn't.)

If you are Christian, don't take Palm Sunday and Easter for granted.  Remember that there are between the Sundays there is the rough road of Monday through Saturday.  That road is what bring us to the celebration of Easter.

It is important for all of us (no matter what religion or not) to remember that life's path is not straight.  It is full of hills that need to be climbed.  But once we've reached the apex what a view!  Was it worth the struggle?  I'd like to think it is.


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