Stretching a bit beyond this connection, I think of sacrifices that people have made throughout the generations. I heard of many sacrifices that my parents and grandparents made during the Great Depression.
- Of making do.
- Of being content with what you had...even if it paled in comparison to what others had.
- Of losing the family home because of not earning enough money to pay the mortgage. Clients paid with what they had - chickens, eggs, a hot dish. Unfortunately, that didn't help my grandparents keep their home.
I think of the sacrifices that my uncles, grandfather, and dad made in serving during WWII and the Korean War.
And I think about the sacrifices that my parents made in order to move from the inner-city to a safer neighborhood...to a home they designed that was on the east side of a quiet lake so we could enjoy beautiful sunsets throughout the year and live in the country.
They did this on a social worker's salary. When things got really tight, my mom worked at night in a toy factory on an assembly line and later at a bakery so that she could be there for us children when they came home from school. My dad would take temporary jobs during the summer to supplement his income. Anything to make ends meet.
To me, everyone has had to make at least one sacrifice in his or her lifetime. For some people, their lives seem pretty easy. Yet, for others, they need to make many sacrifices - sometimes on a daily basis - just to survive.
Sometimes those sacrifices are easy to notice by others...and other times they are silent sacrifices that are known by the person but not shared with others.
The door of a shed...still functional,
yet desperately in need of repair.
It must wait while other more critical things are addressed.
I've learned that nothing comes without sacrifice.
According to "Sacrifice is Such a Hopeful Word" by Rev. Tim Kutzmark, who echoed the same sentiment, "Think about it — the snow must melt, the ice must thaw, the seed must crack, the bulb must be buried, the bud must break open — in order for spring to unfold."
He continued, "Think about it:
- A problem drinker must give up the bottle in order to claim health and clarity.
- A parent must give up untrammeled freedom and unrestricted sense of self in order to raise children.
- A rambunctious teenager must give up some of their desire to confront and confound in order to sit down and get the education that will allow them to secure their way through life.
- A preschooler must share their teddy bear in order to make a new friend.
- An unhappy spouse must risk financial insecurity in order to end the marriage that has stifled their spirit.
- A person who is lonely, grieving, or ill must give up the illusion of independence in order to gain the support of friends and family who will walk with them through the valley of shadows.
"The spirit of spring, the spirit of Easter, the spirit of Passover, the Spirit of Life calls to each of us to consider our lives, to consider our circumstances, to consider our choices, to consider what we must risk, where we can stretch, how we can dream.
"...Easter...asks of us, of our lives, today: what must we let go of, what must we crack open, what must we plant, what must we grow?"