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For us as Christians, Easter is the most important celebration or season of the year. Easter clearly points out our great sin and our need for forgiveness, God's abiding love for us and the wonder and hope of the Resurrection. As parents, you can explain these cornerstones of our faith to your children using a variety of ways appropriate to their maturity level.
The following are a few suggestions for experiencing a memorable, meaningful Easter season with your family.
A New Testament Seder Supper
One of the greatest biblical celebrations, the Feast of the Passover, is central to both Jewish and Christian worship, and can provide a rich historical and spiritual framework for your family's Easter season.
Showcase for your friends and family the amazing historical continuity and intentionality of God's plan of salvation through Jesus, the "Lamb of God," by hosting a Passover seder meal. Not only does this ancient celebration reach deep into the history of the Jewish people, commemorating their deliverance by God from slavery in Egypt, but Christians believe it was instituted by God to foreshadow the sacrifice of Jesus, the Lamb of God. Today, during a Messianic, Christ-centered seder supper, using the interactive, scripted readings and prayers called the Haggadah or the "telling," the host recounts to guests the ancient Passover story and explains its powerful meaning for Christian believers today.
Many wonderful resources and recipes can be found on these websites.
Storybooks and Activities
You can also tell the ancient story in fresh new ways through Easter themed picture books, crafts and activities that tell of Jesus' passion and resurrection, the real reasons for all the excitement over Easter.
As Easter approaches and springtime blooms outdoors, fill your home with symbols and words that call to mind not only the natural new life of spring, but also the supernatural. Books for children of all ages tell of the triumphal entry of Jesus into Jerusalem, His passion and resurrection, and are a perfect choice for story time in the weeks and days before Palm Sunday and Easter. Here are a few that we especially like:
Also, as you peruse the store aisles filled with colorful eggs, baby animals and budding flowers, joyfully remind your family of the Christian roots of all the festive splendor. Spend some special time in Easter-themed family scripture studies and decorate your home with colorful hand-made Easter crafts. Here are a few ideas to try:
We Have So Much to Celebrate
This Easter season, in countless creative ways, you can remind your family that, while the rebirth of the earth after the long dark winter is indeed cause for celebration, the spiritual rebirth won for mankind by Jesus, the sacrificial Lamb of God, is infinitely more marvelous! In fact, it is at the very center of our Christian faith, as the Apostle, Paul, states so powerfully in 1 Corinthians 15:14-19:
And if Christ has not been raised, our preaching is useless and so is your faith. More than that, we are then found to be false witnesses about God, for we have testified about God that he raised Christ from the dead... And if Christ has not been raised, your faith is futile; you are still in your sins. Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ are lost. If only for this life we have hope in Christ, we are of all people most to be pitied.
Whether you choose to re-enact the ancient story with a Passover seder meal or bring it to life through books and crafts, make the Resurrection of Jesus the focal point, not only of your springtime, but of your family's whole outlook on life.
Aimee Riegert, CSLI Fellow, earned bachelor’s degrees in mathematics and foreign language studies from Southern Methodist University. In addition to supporting various national security efforts in Northern Virginia, she has worked as an itinerant high school math teacher and drama coach, and has served in women’s ministries, praise teams, on the adult support team for Young Life and as a “mentor mom” for MOPS International ministries, as well as English instructor in several ESL programs in Japan. She is a graduate of the C.S. Lewis Institute Year One Fellows Program.