Katie Grace lost another tooth, her fourth baby tooth to move out and make room for permanent teeth in the past year. It happened in Wilmington, North Carolina, at home where she is safer from the virus. Her mom was helping her brush her teeth when it happened. Mom, Shannon, texted us a picture of K.G., a big gap right in the middle of her smile — snaggle tooth.
Thinking of COVID-19, I asked if the Tooth Fairy is quarantined.
Since it happened on Saturday before Easter, Nahnee took it a step further with her text: “Oh my goodness ... The Tooth Fairy and the Easter Bunny on the same night!!! You may have to direct traffic!!” (Followed by an emoji laughing with tears.)
Shannon replied, “I asked her if she thought they would run into each other ... she said they were probably already friends.”
Perfect logic for a 6-year-old — and a stinking cute one at that.
But seriously, a couple hours earlier they had posted a video on Marco Polo of K.G. reading the real Easter story from an e-book. The story began with Jesus in the garden on Thursday night and ended with the women finding the empty tomb on Resurrection Sunday. It was so, so precious — even the part where she interrupted herself to ask her mom, in a whisper, what the word “weep” means.
Later, Shannon texted us a link that directed us to this year’s Easter celebration at their church in Wilmington. It was even more inspirational than other stories had been entertaining, and we watched it more than once.
Hopefully, these extended weeks of being confined to our homes — these long days of pandemic panic, this horrible time of economic disaster, the fear of catastrophic sickness and loss of life — all of it, hopefully, has caused us to spend some introspective moments. Hopefully, we have been drawn closer to our loved ones, even those with whom we can only correspond virtually. Hopefully, this experience has made us more aware of our dependence on God. Hopefully, we have been reminded that the hope of the resurrection is a daily reality. Hopefully, the awareness that Jesus died to atone for our sins and that He lives to intercede for us will become the most important part of who we are.
Celebrating Easter in a parking lot — or in front of a computer screen — was certainly different, but many of us have watched and rewatched services from various locations. Some of us have worshipped with believers from all over the world, and we have revisited those experiences again and again since Easter Sunday.
For believers, Easter is every day. It’s not just one Sunday each year. It’s not just a season of Lent leading up to Resurrection Sunday and 50 days following Passover, taking us to Pentecost. Even through unprecedented periods of history — like, now — the resurrection of our Lord brings hope, assurance and strength.
Periods of time spent with our families, even enjoying tales of the Easter Bunny and The Tooth Fairy, are very important and precious. But the time we spend with our risen Savior is the most important time we spend.
Sharing stories is fun, but sharing Jesus is joy unspeakable. Human experiences are powerful, but those experiences pale in comparison to the reality of experiencing the presence of God in our daily lives.
Steve Playl — chaplain, columnist, college instructor and former pastor — can be emailed at email@example.com.