27 Mar Keeping Jesus at the Center of Easter
Easter is so much fun, y’all! We all get to wear white again [yes, I’m old school!] and the flowers are out and families gather together… It’s SUCH a fun time of year! Easter, for me, is such an incredible time to consider so many different things, but mostly the immense love that God has for His children, which was portrayed to us through the death and resurrection of Jesus. Y’all… each year I cry my eyes out on Easter just thinking of that sacrifice and how Jesus loves us so much that he was willing to endure all of that, die and conquer death… all for me. While the Easter bunny and egg hunts and candy and flowers are so much fun [and I truly LOVE those aspects of the celebration], I want my children to know the love of Christ all year long – especially at Easter. Keeping Jesus at the center of Easter is something that, as Christian parents, we need to be intentional about. It requires effort, but it’s not hard to do.
Here are some ways we try to do it at our house:
We’re strategic about our Easter decorations: I love to decorate my home for the seasons and Easter is no exception! Placing out colorful eggs and touches of Springtime make is so fun to do, but I also want to make sure that the true meaning for the season is all over our house as well! I love this Easter banner that says “He is Risen” and the story of Easter told out on the Family Treedition Easter Egg ornaments!
We read Easter books that tell the story of Jesus:
Next to the mantle, I keep an Easter basket full of Easter books, most of them about the true story of Easter. These books stay in the living room, so when my littles want to read if we’re sitting around, they are right there for the taking! These books are a great way to talk about the story of Easter in a kid-friendly way. Here are some of our favorite books that do a great job of keeping Jesus at the center of Easter:
We do Jesus-centered Easter activities:
The Resurrection Eggs
These eggs come pre-filled and alongside a book that takes you through the story of Easter. B loves opening the eggs and telling me what each thing is for. This is great because the littlest ones can just enjoy opening the eggs and see what’s inside and you don’t have to get too deep into the facts of what they all represent, while the beauty is in the treasure and what it represents for the older ones.
Talking about the brutality of what happened on Good Friday is totally up to you as a parent. With our 2 year old daughter, we try to say things like “That hurt Jesus” “It made him sad” “It made Him bleed really bad” “The tomb was empty”… With our 5 year old, we’ve decided to tell him the details… I think our little ones can handle that better than we think, but once again – that’s up to each parent. Either way, the book has resources on how to tell the story of Easter and cultivate the conversation. It’s a fabulous way to talk about the story with them – no matter their age. Get your set here.
The Family Treedition Easter Egg Advent Calendar Tree
I. AM. OBSESSED. WITH. THIS. That’s it. This past Christmas, we did the felt ornament Advent calendar that tells the story of the lineage of Christ through the entire Bible over the span of 25 Days, ending with the birth of Jesus. This Easter Advent Calendar completes the story by telling the story of Christ’s life, death and resurrection. Talk about keeping Jesus at the center of Easter… it’s Biblical truth presented in a way that children can understand. It comes with devotionals and is so beautifully made, that I love keeping it out as Easter decor! I’ve linked the eggs and a few different trees like the one we have here:
We keep it fun:
I’m all about blending the fun, Easter stuff in while still keeping Jesus at the center of Easter. While it has nothing to do with the true story of Easter, we dye Easter eggs, eat yummy, Easter treats and we talk and read about the Easter Bunny, too! My parents did a great job of blending the two together and I want children to experience the same! I think Easter Egg hunts and chocolates are so much fun for the little ones to celebrate with, so long as there’s an emphasis on the true meaning of Easter. They don’t have to be separate! You can make these ‘secular’ activities more faith-filled if you want! For example:
We talk about the egg hunts and how they looked for Jesus in the tomb, but He wasn’t there… “Where is Jesus? He isn’t here. He is risen!”
When dying eggs, we talk about how the white egg is made new when we dye it – it can never go back to a plain white egg again. In the same way, Jesus makes us new too! (bonus points for bringing in baptism… when the egg dips into the water, it comes out new – it’s a public statement of an internal change of faith!)
At meals leading up to Easter and at Easter Lunch, we talk about the Last Supper.
The Easter Bunny comes at night and leaves a gift – it’s a good opportunity to talk about the passover and how the darkness came and took a gift from the Egyptians… and how the blood of the lamb covered the Israelites then and the blood of The Lamb (Jesus) covers us. So we celebrate by having something come in the night and leave us a gift to remind us that Jesus saved us.
Spending the holiday celebrating the gift of Easter with family is, to me, the best way to do it! Here are some fun photos of us at Easter over the past few years. We usually spend the holiday in Austin with my family – spending some somber time considering the sacrifice on Good Friday, doing all the fun, family Easter traditions we can do on Saturday and celebrating and basking in the grace and wonder that is this holiday at church and lunch on Sunday! He is risen, indeed!
I hope each and every one of you have a wonderful Easter holiday with your families.