Easter Sunday is here, but I like to call it Resurrection Sunday. That’s what it’s all about anyway. Three items for today.
First off, I had a good time with my family at my grandmother’s house. It’s a long standing tradition. My sister customarily makes a batch of fudge for any holiday get-together. Let me just tell ya, I would put my sister’s fudge up against just about any store-bought fudge; it really is that good. A while back at a church social, someone brought cherry flavored fudge. I was quite curious and wanted the recipe. The gal who brought it explained that you use a kool-aid packet to flavor it. So I asked her if it worked with other kool-aid flavors and she said that it did. I gave the recipe to my sister who immediately asked me what flavor of fudge I wanted her to make for the Easter Sunday get-together at Grandma’s. I responded with Orange. So my sister made some Orange Fudge which tasted just like Orange Sherbet, only it was fudge. It was great. Thanks again for the recipe, Tiffany. It was one of the less controversial "Treats With Tiffany".
Second, I find it interesting on the religious holidays to see which comic strips will do something recognizing the day, or just treat it like business as usual. So I thought I would mention the comic strips that spoke of the resurrection of Christ, the Easter bunny, Easter eggs, the spring equinox, or was it just business as usual.
Business as usual ~ Pickles, Frazz, Garfield, Dilbert, Doonesbury, Blondie, Overboard, Zits, Frank and Ernest, Marmaduke, Prince Valiant, Beetle Bailey, Get Fuzzy, Baby Blues, Cathy, Close to Home, Herb and Jamaal, Liberty Meadows, 9 Chickweed Lane, Andy Capp, Opus, Rose is Rose, Jump Start, Mother Goose and Grimm, Boondocks, Ziggy, Dinette Set, Sherman’s Lagoon, Funky Winkerbean, Crock, Pearl’s Before Swine, Rubes, Speed Bump, The Born Loser, Red and Rover, Foxtrot, and Rex Morgan M. D. Some of these strips have recognized Easter in the past, but this year they didn’t.
For Better of for Worse ~ Little Meredith sitting in the pew asks, "When do they get to the part where Jesus meets the Easter Bunny?"
Hagar the Horrible, Luann, Arlo and Janis, Soup to Nutz, and Wizard of Id illustrate strips revolving around Easter eggs.
Hi and Lois does a fair job of putting the family in church on Easter Sunday. The scene from the pulpit is the preacher saying that the message this day is one of eternal hope and gratitude.
Heart of the City recognizes Easter as "the day of days" and briefly mentions God.
Sally Forth keeps with the yearly tradition of Sally biting the ears off her daughter Hillary’s chocolate Easter bunny. Rugrats mentions chocolate bunnies, but not Easter.
Curtis shows he and his brother Barry in church on Easter, but with Curtis making fun of the ladies’ hats, which is also an ongoing gag in the strip, not necessarily confined to Easter.
Dennis the Menace, Mutts, Heathcliff, and Pooch Cafe all have funny skits regarding the Easter Bunny.
Gasoline Alley mentions spring and Easter in the context of vernal rebirth.
But for me, the all time worst strip of mentioning Easter without mentioning the true meaning of the resurrection is contained in Mallard Fillmore. The "liberal" talking head says not to do another religious Easter cartoon but to do something about bunnies and eggs. Meanwhile, Mallard Fillmore simply states a generic statement about the true meaning of Easter without mentioning Jesus Christ, the Bible, the resurrection, or even God. Why make fun of liberals who don’t want to mention the true meaning of Easter, and then NOT mention the true meaning of Easter? Does anyone else see double standard here? It’s like complaining about something while all the time having the power to do something about it, but not exercising that power.
The winners of the day were Family Circus, Agnes, and B. C. In Family Circus, Dolly comments on the Easter lilly. Then she says that the Easter flower should be a rose because that’s what Jesus did on Easter, He A-Rose. Cute, well drawn, on topic, and to the point. Great job Keane’s! Agnes mentions the true meaning of Easter to her mixed up friend including the facts of the Son of God living among us as a man, being put to death, death having no power over Him, and He arose from the grave. Her friend is still mixed up at the end. Good presentation.
In B. C., the strip by long time Christian Johnny Hart, he brings together the crucifixion, the resurrection, and even direct Bible quotes; here they are. "Jesus, remember me when you come into your kingdom." "Assuredly I say to you today you will be with me in paradise." "It is finished." "Truly this man was the Son of God." Johnny Hart does it in a way that is original, appropriate, and yet portraying the truth about Resurrection Sunday. Johnny Hart makes it his goal on Christian holidays to bring out the true meaning. He is definitely a bright and shining light in the comic realm amidst a world of darkness. My hat goes off to Johnny Hart. Keep preachin it brother!
Thirdly, I had the opportunity, once again, to lead in prayer in front of my family just before Easter dinner. These past few years I have taken the opportunity to share the meaning of the Resurrection briefly without trying to sound "preachy". I shared how I appreciated my grandmother inviting us all over on a day which is quite special to me. Jesus had been crucified and that meant the end of his movement. The disciples had gone into hiding in fear for their lives when Jesus rose from the dead and appeared to them showing He was more powerful than death itself. As the discples went forward spreading the message, this gave them such boldness, because what could anyone do to stop them? Would they say to stop preaching about Jesus or we will put you to death? Their response would be to go ahead, because they would just rise again from the dead when the LORD comes again to give them new resurrection bodies like the one He now has. Some of my family attends church and some don’t. Some have made professions of faith, most haven’t
I think many times we try to invite folks to church to let the preacher give them the gospel. That way, if they reject the gospel, they are not rejecting us. Is that the way you see most Christians trying to preach the gospel? Is this right?
Have fun and stay busy – Luke 19:13
-The Orange Mailman (who now knows what Orange Fudge tastes like)