Whatever your personal spiritual beliefs may be, here’s a little Easter humor to remind you that every adversity brings with it an opportunity to grow and expand into the next, best version of yourself.
There’s a funny story about Easter that has stuck with me for many years, and it goes like this:
Saint Peter and Jesus are having a conversation, and Saint Peter is complaining about all the people who get into heaven who have no understanding of scripture.
Jesus says to Saint Peter, “Well, what are you going to do about it?”
St. Peter decides to give the next three people who come up to the pearly gates of Heaven a quiz about scripture.
The first person comes up to the gates, and Saint Peter says, “Before you go can enter, I have a question for you. Tell me… what is the feast of Easter?”
The person thinks about it and says, “I think the feast of Easter is when the pilgrims came over to the New World on the Mayflower, and then they had a big feast with the native people who were first living there. Am I right?”
Saint Peter says, “Go and wait in the holding room. I’ll come and see you in a minute.”
Then a second person approaches the gates. St. Peter asks them the same question, and the person replies, “The feast of Easter is when Joseph and Mary traveled to Bethlehem and there was no room in the inn, so they had the baby Jesus right there, outside with the lowly cattle… is that right?”
Once again, Saint Peter says, “Go and wait in the holding room. I’ll come and see you in a minute.”
Finally, a third person approaches the gates, and St. Peter again asks his question. The person replies, “Well, I think the feast of Easter is when Jesus rode into Jerusalem on a donkey, and then after the Last Supper, there was a great betrayal…”
And St. Peter excitedly says, “Yes, yes! Go on…”
“And then there was the arrest, then the trial, and then the crucifixion…”
And St. Peter encouragingly says, “Yes, yes! Keep going!”
“And then Jesus was in the tomb for three days, and people gathered around, waiting, and when Jesus came out… they were very anxious to know whether he saw his own shadow, because then they would know if there were six more weeks of winter!”
And St. Peter puts his hands on his head and sighs.
What can we take away from this Easter humor?
I love this funny story because it’s a nice reminder that, regardless of what our personal spiritual beliefs may be, we can all reflect on and tap into the spirit behind different religious holidays, and apply the messages they contain to our own lives.
In this case, Easter is about transformation – it’s about the power inside all of us to rise above our circumstances, even in situations that may seem dark or difficult.
When we embrace the magnitude of this power, we can rise up and experience a fresh, new beginning.
There’s a story about a donkey that falls into a well that helps illustrate how tapping the power within us can transform our lives…
One day an old farmer finds his old donkey down at the bottom of the well.
The farmer thinks sadly to himself, “How on earth am I going to get this donkey up and out of there? Well, it’s probably time for him to go anyway.”
So the farmer and a neighbor decide to just throw dirt over the donkey and put him out of his misery.
As the dirt is falling down upon the animal, it starts thinking to itself, “I’m not ready to be put out of my misery!” And he decides right then and there that no matter what, he’s going to shake it off and step up.
So the donkey shakes off the dirt and begins to step up onto the pile of dirt that’s forming. As more dirt falls down on him, he continues to shake it off and keep stepping up… right up until he’s able to actually step right up and out of the well!
The donkey’s attitude and a process is one that you can choose to bring to any circumstance, situation or condition in your life, no matter how challenging. It could be a diagnosis, a divorce, a move, the loss of a job – any type of situation that you wish wasn’t happening, but that’s happening anyway.
We can accept a diagnosis, but not the prognosis. We can accept a divorce, but know that it doesn’t mean we’re unloveable and won’t find love again. We may have difficulty financially right now, but that’s not our future, unless we decide it’s going to be.
You always have the power to shake off the energy or the emotion of any challenging situation, tap into the immense power that’s within you, and keep moving forward.
Just as Easter season marks the beginning of Spring, we can look at the holiday of Easter to remind us that…
A season of renewal always returns to our lives, even following the most challenging winters.
Sometimes it’s not easy to go through our own personal challenges and setbacks, and sometimes we feel like we’re being tried unfairly by life.
But our ability to be resilient and triumphant comes from our ability to do what we can, from where we are, and with what he have in the present.
So remember that whatever is happening in your life right now, that there is a power in you that is greater than any circumstance, situation or condition that life can bring to us, and we tap into this power most profoundly in the presence of major difficulty.
And when we partner with this power and persevere, we resurrect ourselves and enter into a fresh beginning.