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Happy Easter, friends!
Spoiler alert: Mother-and-son rap video at the very end!
Did you grow up believing in the Easter Bunny? Did you grow up painting eggs, hiding and hunting them, exchanging Easter gift baskets, and eating gobs of chocolate bunnies? I don’t really remember my family placing much emphasis on the “Easter Bunny,” but we did participate in all the other fun Easter festivities described above.
I recall one particular Easter Sunday morning where my twin brother snuck into the living room while the rest of the family slept snugly in our beds, and he ate ALL the chocolate out of ALL the Easter baskets… AND … yes, there’s more… he licked off ALL the icing on an Easter bunny cake my mom had spent hours baking and decorating. Sorry to spill the “jelly beans,” bro.
How the Easter Bunny Meets Jesus
Is it wrong to bring chocolate and bunnies and all the other “secular” festivities of Easter into the mix of remembering Jesus’ sacrifice on the cross and celebrating His resurrection? Some people say we have turned Easter— much like Christmas— into a “pagan holiday.”
I let my own kids paint Easter eggs, go on Easter egg hunts, and eat chocolate during this “holiday.”
Kids are very visual, and they retain information best when they are participating in fun, exciting, and motor-driven activities. You can read the Bible to them all day long, but they will better remember its stories and better conceptualize its message when they participate in hands-on activities.
And who knows, they may even share it with a friend who doesn’t know about Jesus— another reason why I let them attend Easter parties and let them participate in Easter activities with other kids.
Here are five special messages you can share with your child— messages that share the plan of salvation— while having “Easter fun.”
- Painting Easter eggs:
When you paint Easter eggs with your child, you can talk about how each egg is unique and different and how they can be painted with lots of different colors. Some eggs can even have sparkly glitter, stickers, and wraps! But while the shells may look different on the outside, each egg is the same on the inside. They all have a gooey yolk on the inside of their shell. In the same way, we humans are all sinners, no matter what we may look like on the outside. Romans 3:23, “For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.”
- Making and giving Easter baskets:
It’s fun to give and receive presents. It’s especially fun when that present has been prepared with a lot of special thought and love, much like an Easter basket. When you make and give an Easter basket, you can remind your child that God gave us the most precious gift of all— His son, Jesus Christ— who in turn gave us the gift of salvation. John 3:16, “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.”
- Easter egg hunts:
Easter egg hunts are lots of fun, right? One neat way to focus on Jesus during an Easter egg hunt is to help your child conceptualize Jesus’ burial and resurrection. When Jesus died, He was buried in a tomb and hidden out of sight, just like an Easter egg is hidden. But then Jesus rose from the dead and appeared before His disciples, like an egg appearing before a child’s eyes during an Easter egg hunt. Mark 8:31, “[Jesus] then began to teach them that the Son of Man must suffer many things and be rejected by the elders, the chief priests and the teachers of the law, and that he must be killed and after three days rise again.”
You can also refer to the song, Amazing Grace, that says, “I once was lost but now am found, was blind but now I see.” Without Jesus, we are lost and in the dark. But when Jesus enters our heart, we are found, and we belong to Him for eternity.
And, eggs often symbolize new life and new beginnings, and Jesus gives us new life through His salvation.
- Eating chocolate and other sweets:
Who doesn’t love chocolate?! When eating chocolate and other sweets at Easter time, you can remind your child about how “sweet” is the love of Jesus and how nothing compares to Him. Psalm 119:103, “How sweet are Your words to my taste! Yes, sweeter than honey to my mouth!” You could also sing the kid praise songs, “I Like Bananas,” “The Love of Jesus, Sweet and Marvelous,” and “More Precious Than Silver.”
- Easter parties:
My boys usually have Easter parties at their school and daycare. Easter Parties are good reminders to help your child understand that Easter is not only a time of remembrance and reflection of Jesus’ sacrifice, it’s also a time for CELEBRATION because He rose from the dead and is coming back again! Acts 2:24-26, “But God raised him from the dead, freeing him from the agony of death, because it was impossible for death to keep its hold on him. David said about him: ‘I saw the Lord always before me. Because he is at my right hand, I will not be shaken. Therefore, my heart is glad and my tongue rejoices; my body also will rest in hope.”
The “takeaway” is that we can keep Jesus in the center while also participating in fun, family-friendly activities that non-believers participate in. Being in the world but not of it. Loving people and meeting people where they’re at, while also sharing the Good News about Jesus.
Attending and participating in “secular” holiday activities like community Easter egg hunts and office Christmas parties are great opportunities to share your faith— to share the deeper meaning of the holiday and why it’s so special to you.
Caleb and I made an “Easter Rap Video” to further clarify this message. “Easter’s not about the bunny. It’s all about the Lamb!” Click on the image below to watch. Be sure to watch to the very end; you don’t want to miss the bloopers!
An important P.S.
If you would like to experience a personal, up-close encounter with Jesus this Easter and take a deeper look into the symbolism of the events that led up to His death and resurrection, I highly encourage you to read my friend, Sharon Butler’s, brand new Easter book, Secrets of the Cross: Following the Steps of Jesus’ Last Days to Uncover Mysteries of the Cross. It will touch you. It will move you. It will make you experience the remembrance, reflection, and celebration of Easter in a whole new, enlightened perspective.
Click on the image below to learn more.
Have a BLESSED Easter,