The Easter Blues

The new normal at the McCarthy house is now Anna, Cora, and I have a family meeting every day at 9 am to start the day with a plan, prayer, and purpose. These meetings are usually met with more eye rolls than excitement, but we press on nonetheless. On Wednesday, we were discussing Holy Week, and we talked a bit about how this Easter was going to be different, and I was telling them that I seem to become more anxious as we get closer to Thursday and Friday. For me, knowing what Jesus went through for us is so hard to comprehend, it weighs heavy on my thoughts. Anna then raised a question.

“Do you think Jesus felt anxiety about what was coming?”

I have been thinking about her question for days. Scripture says that Jesus was fully man and fully God, and yet even with all that power, He only did what the Father told Him to do. Jesus knew the pain of what was coming, and it deeply weighed on Him. Yet, in His hardest moments, He still modeled what we are to do with our anxiety.

In Matthew 26:36-46, when Jesus was in the garden of Gethsemane, He took time to be alone and gave His anxious thoughts to God. He asked the Father tough questions, crying out to Him with such raw emotion that it gives me a lump in my throat when I think about it. God didn’t change the circumstances or take away the pain of the Cross. However, God strengthened His Son, and gave Him the peace needed to continue to walk out the path set before Him.

My most frequent anxious thought is, “How big of a deal is this Pandemic?” We are watching this global event unfold before our eyes, which is having an unprecedented impact on our lives. The world has not seen anything like this in generations. So, lately, when my anxiety creeps in, I quickly turn on the news or go online to read commentaries and articles to try to make sense of it. The problem is, what I’m doing is not working. My anxiety doesn’t lessen with more facts, figures, and charts.

I think it’s time for a new strategy.

Perhaps this week, I will follow Jesus’ lead and take a walk alone (without my phone) and ask God some hard questions and then wait for His answers. Good Friday didn’t feel good for anyone, but it had an incredible purpose that no one in that time could have fully understood. I am eager to see what God does through our current mess and am encouraged that when I get close to Him, I become His ally walking out His Plan, and can have true peace even in times like these.

Although it will look different than any other Easter weekend in the past, I am praying that this Easter brings you Hope, Peace, and a renewed sense of Purpose.

We will get through this together!

In His service and at yours! 


Published by Shawn McCarthy

While serving as the Weekend Experience Pastor at Seacoast Church, I felt God prompting me to share the moments when He would speak His truth into my life through scripture in a way that made sense to me, giving me tangible ways to learn, grow and lead. These promptings turned into weekly emails that I would send my small groups and volunteer teams. I found myself enjoying the process of digging deeper into God’s Word, being stretched by the writing process, and encouraging others in the faith. My lovely wife, Anna, challenged me to begin this blog, so these moments that I have come to call, my “Red-Letter Moments,” can find a home. My prayer is that you will find hope, comfort, and inspiration here, and above all, you will come to know that the God of the universe loves you and desires a personal relationship with you.”

2 thoughts on “The Easter Blues

  1. Pastor Shawn, we must, think of, and believe in Jesus strength, when He walked away to listen to His Father. So must we, take a walk,( even if only in our minds) to ask God for strength in this miserable of miserable times. Thank you so much for pointing these things out to us.As look out my window now, the sky seems to be clearing, and may let the sun shine through. So it is with Jesus, he will let the sun shine through our prayers. Keep hope in our hearts and faith uppermost in our minds and we too will shine through.


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