I expect many of us remember that verse from childhood. A hot cross bun was something one only saw once a year, usually on Good Friday. Now one appears to be able to buy a bun with a cross at any time! It used to make me very annoyed! – but no longer! Why? Since Christmas I have been noticing afresh how the layout of the shelves and advertising slogans change within our larger shops – and carry on changing. As soon as Christmas was over large signs proclaiming ‘Sales’ were the order of the day. – then very soon red roses and red balloons proclaimed the advent of St Valentine’s Day; as I write this, the prominent colours are softer – pinks and lemons, and lovable cuddly toys proclaim that Mothering Sunday is nearly upon us. Then of course it will be yellow chicks, eggs and rabbits – Easter. Then it will be ‘Thank you teacher time’, ‘Congratulations’ – exam time, Halloween and suddenly we’re back to Christmas. But in between there are all the ordinary days of shopping – feeding and clothing oneself or a family for everyday life. For Christians, life within the church is a bit like that of the shops. Yes we have the day to day worshipping and living as Christians, but like the shops we have the special celebrations; Christmas, Mothering Sunday, Easter, Ascension Day, Pentecost, Harvest, All Saints Day etc. etc. The time of this magazine will cover the great celebrations of Easter, Ascension and Pentecost with the wonderful news that Jesus is alive today, that He is with us to the end of time and that the Holy Spirit of God will guide, empower us and comfort us in whatever lies ahead. So what is all that to do with the high days of our Supermarkets especially hot cross buns? Well, in the shops Easter has a limited shelf life, Christmas has a limited shelf life; Mothering Sunday has a limited shelf life.
But within the life of the Christian church –the good news of Christmas is for ever, the good news of Easter is for ever; the good news of Ascension Day is for ever; Jesus Christ may be born within us at any time and any place; the promise of Jesus on Ascension day is for all time and for all people ‘Lo I am with you always to the end of the age.
The Hambledonian should be out in our homes on Easter Day, as we commemorate that first Easter when Jesus Christ rose from the dead to be with us for ever, and promising that we too may have the gift of eternal life. Those words are not empty promises that we remember for a few days while the shops are full of Easter eggs. They are for all, for every day for ever. Christ is risen.
So perhaps we shouldn’t mind or no longer be annoyed that the Hot Cross Bun may be eaten every and any day for it reminds us that Jesus and the Cross have conquered Death and given us life in all its fullness for all eternity not just for a few days each year.
Let us enjoy Hot Cross Buns whenever and wherever and rejoice in what God has done and continues to do.
Jesus Christ is risen.