When I was about ten, and far too old for the Easter Bunny legend, my parents still went through the whole Easter egg hunt thing for my younger brother and I. My mother would boil and color the eggs - I remember once she dipped them in such a way that they were plaid - and Daddy got the job of Easter bunny.
To this day, I can't bring myself to cut the grass before Easter Sunday. You have to have longish grass to hide the eggs in. And, of course, the tiny new spring flowers, the violets and the jack-in-the-pulpits and the little white and gold flowers have to be left, just for pretty.
There is this magical moment when you are little and rush out onto dewy grass, basket in hand, and gasp as you see the first egg, just barely visible in a tuft of grass. You scoop it up and scan the yard for the next one, run toward it stumbling with glee. There is finally a moment when you just can't find any more. Someone has to come and gently lead you back to the house, distracting you from the fever of the hunt with the promise of chocolate.
Like Christmas, even the secular part of Easter is still about love - love that parents have for their children, when they create those magical moments. And the spiritual side of Easter is about the greatest love imaginable.
I learned about a Father's love the Easter I was ten and awoke that Sunday morning, looked out into the back yard from my bedroom. I saw my Dad in his bathrobe and bare feet, loaded basket hung over his arm, gingerly making his way from tuft to tree root, carefully placing each egg in its hiding place. Hiding treasures for us to find, if we searched hard enough.
My earthly father is gone now. I have carried on his tradition with my own children, and soon will share it with grandchildren.
My Heavenly Father is, I believe, still hiding treasures for me to find, if I just look carefully enough.