4:52 PM Marcie Parson 2 Comments

My superwoman sister-in-law Sara brought her six boys down to Arizona last weekend, which gave us the perfect excuse to (a) swim in the pool and enjoy some sunshine, and (b) go to the Easter Pageant at the Mesa LDS Temple! It was the perfect way to welcome the Easter season.

I love Easter with my whole heart. As far as favorite holidays go, it ranks up there with Christmas because it celebrates the single most important event to ever occur: the Atonement of Jesus Christ. After all, as Gordon B. Hinckley said, "There would be no Christmas if there had not been Easter. The babe Jesus of Bethlehem would be but another baby without the redeeming Christ of Gethsemane and Calvary and the triumphant fact of the Resurrection."

Did you know that there are over 2 billion Christians in the world? Now think of all of the people who celebrate Easter - it's mind-blowing! I personally never appreciated the significance of Easter until two years ago when I lived in Jerusalem. I remember overlooking the city, completely overwhelmed with emotion as I realized,

"I t   r e a l l y   h a p p e n e d.   h e r e." 

It was suddenly so real to me. I had spent months studying the accounts in the Bible and visiting all of the places where Jesus taught, lived, suffered, and died; and then it just clicked. It's real. Not just in the sense that it happened long ago -- but that it affects us every  s i n g l e  day. Because of Him, death is not the end, and life takes on new meaning. Every day is a new beginning. We can start over again, and again, and again, and can be always be forgiven. We can have clean slates and second (and third! and fourth!) chances. He is an everlasting source of peace, comfort, and hope.

He lives! And from this truth my happiness stems.