Words for the Holy Week

I wanted to write something for Easter, but it just wasn’t working. The well of words ran dry. And you know what? That’s okay. I don’t always have to say something great to commemorate a special time or interact with issues I care about or––well, basically, I don’t always have to say something, period. That’s something I’ve been learning recently. And I guess I did just say something by saying that. Oh well.

The point is: for this Easter, I’m showing up not as a creator but as a connoisseur. I selected some of my favorite songs and quotes for each day of the Holy Weekend. (Is that a thing? I know Holy Week is, but I’m not sure about the weekend. It should be anyhow.) Most of the songs and quotes relate directly to the events of each day, but some are a little more, idk, less obviously about Easter, especially for Saturday. But the cool thing about Easter story is how deeply it has permeated all of art, not just explicitly Easter stuff.

I hope these words can make Easter little more real and meaningful to you this year. ❤

i. friday | weep

For all the pain you suffered, my mama. For all the torment of your past and future years, my mama. For all the anguish this picture of pain will cause you. For the unspeakable mystery that brings good fathers and sons into the world and lets a mother watch them tear at each other’s throats. For the Master of the Universe, whose suffering world I do not comprehend. For dreams of horror, for nights of waiting, for memories of death, for the love I have for you, for all the things I remember, and for all the things I should remember but have forgotten, for all these I created this painting—an observant Jew working on a crucifixion because there was no aesthetic mold in his own religious tradition into which he could pour a painting of ultimate anguish and torment.

~ Chaim Potok, My Name Is Asher Lev


More I recall not, yet the vision spread
Into a world remote, an age to come­
And still the illumined name of Jesus shed
A light, a clearness, through the enfolding gloom­
And still I saw that sign, which now I see,
That cross on yonder brow of Calvary.

What is this Hebrew Christ ? To me unknown,
His lineage—­doctrine—­mission—­yet how clear,
Is God-like goodness, in his actions shewn!
How straight and stainless is his life’s career!
The ray of Deity that rests on him,
In my eyes makes Olympian glory dim.

~ Charlotte Bronte, “Pilate’s Wife’s Dream”


He was pierced and scourged and mocked. He was cursed and raised up on a tree, but He was in that ancient pose of victory.

An old man on a hill, a blind man between two pillars, the God Man on a cross.

Glory is sacrifice, glory is exhaustion, glory is having nothing left to give.

Almost.

It is death by living.

The earth shook. The roof came down. The world changed. The armies fled.

That Moses kept his hands up.

~ N. D. Wilson, Death By Living

Last Words (Tenebrae) | Andrew Peterson

Today you will be with me in Paradise
You will be with me today

How Love Wins | Steven Curtis Chapman

This is how love wins
Every single time
Climbing high upon a tree
Where someone else should die

Mercy’s War | Jon Foreman

Oh, the wonderful blood of Jesus
Maker is unmade
Love succums to hate
Life himself is slain

ii. saturday | wait

“Belief isn’t simply a thing for times and bright days, I think. What is belief—what is faith––if you don’t continue it after failure? … Anyone can believe in someone, or something, that always succeeds, Mistress. But failure…ah, now, that is hard enough to believe in, certainly and truly. Difficult enough to have value, I think.”

~ Brandon Sanderson, Mistborn: The Final Empire


“All that is made seems planless to the darkened mind, because there are more plans than it looked for.”

~ C. S. Lewis, Perelandra


You never know how much you really believe anything until its truth of falsehood becomes a matter of life and death to you. It is easy to say you believe a rope to be strong and sound as long as you are merely using it to cord a box. But suppose you had to hang by that rope over a precipice. Wouldn’t you then first discover how much you really trusted it?

~ C. S. Lewis, A Grief Observed

God Rested | Andrew Peterson

So they took His body down
The man who said He was the resurrection and the life
Was lifeless on the ground
The sky was red as blood along the blade of night

Remember When It Rained | Josh Groban

Oh, remember when it rained.
Felt the ground and looked up high
And called your name.
Oh, remember when it rained.
In the darkness I remain.

There Is a Plan | Twila Paris

It was a very dark time
It was a very dark place
There was a visible force
And an invisible grace

iii. sunday | wonder

“Oh, you’re real, you’re real! Oh, Aslan!” cried Lucy, and both girls flung themselves upon him and covered him with kisses.

“But what does it all mean?” asked Susan when they were somewhat calmer.

“It means,” said Aslan, “that though the Witch knew the Deep Magic, there is a magic deeper still which she did not know. Her knowledge goes back only to the dawn of time. But if she could have looked a little further back, into the stillness and the darkness before Time dawned, she would have read there a different incantation. She would have known that when a willing victim who had committed no treachery was killed in a traitor’s stead, the Table would crack and Death itself would start working backward.”

~ C. S. Lewis, The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe


For like a shaft, clear and cold, the thought pierced him that in the end the Shadow was only a small and passing thing: there was light and high beauty for ever beyond its reach.

~ J. R. R. Tolkein, The Return of the King


What seemed to the disciples the final acme of disappointment and grief, the vanishing of his body itself, was in reality the first sign of the dawn of an illimitable joy. He was not there because he had risen.

~ George MacDonald, Miracles of Our Lord

Alive | Natalie Grant

Alive! Alive!
Look what Mercy’s overcome
Death has lost and Love has won

Christ is Risen, He Is Risen Indeed | Keith and Kristyn Getty

For joy awakes as dawning light
When Christ’s disciples lift their eyes.
Alive He stands, their Friend and King;
Christ, Christ He is risen.

Hosanna | Andrew Peterson

You have crushed beneath your heel the vile serpent
You have carried to the grave the black stain
You have torn apart the temple’s holy curtain
You have beaten Death at Death’s own game

PSA: Andrew Peterson (who, you may have noticed, got a lot of showtime in this post) came out with a new album today, called Resurrection Letters, Vol. I. It’s all about the resurrection (no kidding) and I am insanely excited for it. He also released a five song prologue to it all about the crucifixion––I used two of those songs for Friday and Saturday here––and you can listen to them at this YouTube playlist.

Have you listened to/read any of these before? What are some of your favorite songs and quotes about Easter? How are you celebrating this year?

12 comments

  1. Ohh all of this is perfect. The Saturday pieces spoke to me especially––I never connected that Mistborn quote specifically with Waiting Saturday, but it’s so perfect. ❤
    AND ALKJSDFJ RESURRECTION LETTERS VOL. I !!!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Yayy, I’m so glad you like it. Yeah, that part in Mistborn after You Know What happens always really reminded me of the Saturday after the crucifixion and what the disciples must’ve been feeling like. </3 And AHHHHH YES I cannot wait to listen to them (I'm trying to save them for tomorrow xD)!!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I think the only thing I’ve read out of all these would be the Mistborn trilogy, although I have started the Space Trilogy by C.S. Lewis and gotten most of the way through tLoTR. (I never finished the last book *hides*.) Oh! I also started the Narnia series once upon a time ago. I never finished those either. 🤔 Anyway, this was a beautiful post, and I enjoyed the unique aspect of it, especially the quotes 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • Oh, you really should try to finish the last one! Have you watched the movies? Because the end of the last book is very different from the movies. But I do understand that they can be rather dry and long and hard to get through. And Narnia is wonderful too, you should give it another try. It’s one of those series for kids that gets better the older you are. Did you like Mistborn? And thank you! I know it’s kind of different from most posts, so I’m really glad you liked it. =)

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      • Yes, I have watched the movies, and I like them a lot 🙂 I agree, I really should try to finish the last book, and I’m actually thinking about rereading the first two before that. They were quite long and dry sometimes like you said, but I have a feeling I’d appreciate them (and the Narnia series) a lot more now. The Narnia series in particular never really connected with my young mind, and it frustrates me now, because it feels like missing out on something important. But hey, I could partly remedy that by reading them now, right? 😉 As for the Mistborn series, I liked them! They were kinda my first big foray away from Chriatian fantasy books and into non-Christian fantasy, and it was a positive and successful venture (hehe venture 😉). I loved the magic system! It was so unique and creative. And the characterization was wonderful and so deep, especially Vin, although I did like Elend. I will say it was a little graphic sometimes, with all the fighting, but nothing enough to make me stop reading. (The koloss were nasty. Eyyuck, I hated them 😝) But overall, they are probably one of the best developed books I’ve ever read.

        Liked by 1 person

        • I’m glad you liked the movies. They’re some of my all-time favorites. ❤ And yes, it's never too late to dive into Narnia and Lord of the Rings. There are several books that lots of my friends loved but that when I tried them, I just couldn't get into them. Then I tried them again a year or two later and was finally able to enjoy them. Some books I've actually had to try a few times before I'm in the right mood. So I always tell people to come back to a series if they didn't like it the first time, because it might click better now.

          I totally agree about Mistborn! I remember feeling blown away when I read it, like I didn't know anything like this existed. Brandon Sanderson's world building is phenomenal. It always blows my mind. Every little detail of his world is so unique and intentionally crafted. Haha, venture, nice. And yes, Vin is an amazing character. I know what you mean about the koloss. Fascinating but kind of gross. xD Have you tried his Stormlight Archive series? He's only written the first three books, and they're super long, but the world building and the characters are amazing.

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          • Thank you, that’s good advice! I’ll keep that in mind for some other series as well. 🙂
            No, I have not read the Stormlight Archive series. Are they the ones set in the same world as Mistborn? I know there’s a series like that, it just takes place in a different era or location or something. I never really looked into Sanderson’s other books, though (I got swept up in other series 🙂 ), so I’m sad to say my knowledge of his works ends with Mistborn.

            Liked by 1 person

          • No, the Stormlight Archive is separate from Mistborn (although it is set in the same overarching universe, the Cosmere). I do know what books you’re talking about, though. I read several of them, but I didn’t like them nearly as much as the original trilogy. They had a lot more content issues and just weren’t as, I don’t know, captivating or enthralling as the original series. But yeah, if you ever want to return to Sanderson, the Stormlight Archive is wonderful. =D

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  3. Oh, these are all so good, and now I need to listen to those songs ahhh. And I literally just bought Resurrection Letters I!! I’ve been listening to the Prologue over and over the past few weeks.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I’ve been listening to it over and over again too. ❤ I'm trying to save Resurrection Letters till tomorrow, to listen to them for the first time on Easter, but it's killing me. xD Let me know what you think of it!

      Like

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