Mt. Pleasant Lutheran Church

Easter Message Lives On

May 16th, 2014 by Pastor David Echelbarger

Easter Message Lives On

Easter is a season that lasts a number of weeks. It is not a one and done day. Smack dab in the season of Easter, on May 8, I went on the longest bike ride of my young career. May 8 is a significant day for me. One year ago, I got up early and went for a run. During that run, in Drozid Park, a stick got wedged between my feet and sharply twisted my left knee. I must have torn the meniscus and only later learned that there wasn’t enough meniscus left to repair. That was the last run of my life. Immediately following that run, I attended a program planning meeting of our church staff. Later that morning I learned my dad’s health and taken a turn for the worse and we drove to Iowa where he died later that day.

So, on May 8 a year later, I got on my bike and wanted to do something significant. I rode to Drozid Park past the exact spot that had ended my running career. Then I headed west on Kraut Road and did a large loop that took me west of the interstate.

Throughout the ride, which lasted 51 miles, a new record for me, I thought of my father. As I was nearing home, riding south on HWY 31 just north, I think, of 3 mile road, I was thinking intensely of my father and missing him. He was a very physical person, and so that was why I was doing a physical thing on May 8. I remembered once when he had major surgery; all he could talk about before going under the knife was how he wanted a new bike to ride the trails along the Mississippi where he lived. “This ride is for you Dad,” I thought. My thoughts wrapped in him, I rode on.

Now some people decorate for Easter with eggs and bunnies, but just as I was missing my father I rode by a house that had placed a hand painted sign in the front yard, white with black lettering: It read “He is Risen!” Thinking of my Dad. I saw the sign and read the words: “He is Risen.” My heart just leaped!

Easter is not one and done. Easter is daily hope. Thanks be to God. God’s final word is life, a life that is never done.

Pastor David L. Echelbarger

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