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STOVALL: Take the spirit of Easter Sunday with you on Monday morning
Gabriel Stovall
Gabriel Stovall, Publisher and Editor of The Covington News.

Often when we say, “Jesus is the reason for the season,” it’s at a time when the weather is biting, the Christmas trees are up and trimmed and the stores are filled with marked down gift items and Christmas music piping through the speakers. 

But as Easter/Resurrection Sunday comes upon us, those who believe in God through Jesus Christ should, perhaps, lift that aforementioned statement away from Christmas and apply it to this day. 

While Christmas is the time Christians have adopted to celebrate the birth of Christ, Easter is when Jesus’ chief purpose for His earthly appearance is celebrated. 

Those who are Christians laud this day as the key to salvation. Because it’s when we celebrate Christ’s gruesome and bloody sacrifice on Calvary’s cross and His subsequent resurrection that, according to Christian doctrine, clinched eternal life for those who believe. 

And while I’m fully aware that everyone doesn’t share this faith, for those who do we should be reflective. We should be solemn. And, yes, we should be celebratory during this season. 

But, like Christmas, it seems that so much pageantry, pomp and circumstance has begun to accompany this spring time holiday. 

From Easter egg hunts to extra worship services in churches geared at reminding believers of what Jesus came to Earth to do and hopefully enticing non-church goers to come through the doors. 

With that, unfortunately, comes an increase in gimmicks and tricks to try and increase the bottom line in Christendom — bodies in church building seats. 

By all means, I hope Christians enjoy the weekend. I hope we immerse ourselves into the reason for the season for the Church’s biggest holiday. But at some point, I hope we also take a step back to think about the implications Christ’s death and resurrection should have in the world we live in — beyond Sundays. 

I’m willing to bet that the majority of preachers and pastors who mount pulpits this Sunday will turn the Bible pages to one of the passages that descriptively articulates Christ’s crucifixion, burial and resurrection. But for me, there’s another passage of scripture that feels more fitting for what this Easter season should mean to believers in Christ and our influence to the world. 

It’s Galatians 3:28. From the New King James Version it says, “There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is neither male nor female; for you are all one in Christ Jesus.” 

To me, it would be a shame if we basked in all the glory of this celebratory season without reminding ourselves that it’s a major misnomer to celebrate our risen Christ on Sunday, yet live our lives impervious to the real power that comes with knowing Him, Monday through Saturday. 

Do we really understand the significance of what Jesus did on Calvary if we don’t allow it to permeate our relationships with one another — particularly those who are different than us? 

How do we celebrate a risen Christ who’s blood shed, death and resurrection unifies us in Spirit on Sundays but fail to do so in daily life?

I love this passage from Galatians because, for me, it embodies the power of Christ and the succinct purpose for His pain almost more than any other. 

I love this passage because, for me, it reminds me that my preaching and praying and singing and serving on Easter Sunday means next to nothing if I live the other six days of my week being combative, quick-tempered, ill-speaking of those around me and intolerant of those who are different than me. 

This passage doesn’t make insignificant our differences. It conjoins us together despite them. The gospel doesn’t require us to check our uniqueness at the door. Rather, it provides us the ability to see ourselves and each other through something far more lasting and impactful than our ethnicity, cultures, denominations or political leanings. 

That’s the hope of Easter for me. The fact that death itself couldn’t keep Christ in the grave, and the fact that — according to Romans 8:11 — believers in Christ have within them the same power of the Holy Spirit that raised Him up should be more than enough to energize us into embodying new ways of loving one another. 

We ought to be the models of how to overcome differences to find our camaraderie at Christ’s cross. 

So this Easter weekend, I pray that we would put ourselves in position to reflect on how much we need the real Resurrection power of Christ to come alive in all that we do. 

In our local and national government. 

In our schools. In our churches. In our neighborhoods. In the marketplace. 

We need to be salt and light now, more than ever, to an increasingly bland and dark world. 

Statistics will tell us that fewer people than ever are actually attending church services. Chalk up many reasons for that — reasons we won’t get into in this space today. But you know what else that means? It means more eyes than ever are dutifully watching those of us who proclaim to be Christians to see if what we preach and profess on days like Easter Sunday show up in how we live when all the festivities have ended. 

Christians, let’s use this Easter Sunday to not just celebrate, but contemplate what living out the spirit of Christ’s resurrection means to us beyond Easter Sunday. 

Gabriel Stovall is the publisher and editor of The Covington News. He can be reached at