9 Simple Ways to Have a CHRIST – Centred Easter Without Losing Out On Any Fun
I do believe that this is a topic that a lot of Christian parents struggle with. How do we allow our kids to still have fun and make the special memories we made as kids, while still teaching them the true meaning of what we are actually celebrating? It is so easy for the easter bunny, or santa to steal the show, and I know a lot of parents who has actually banned these from their households, but is that truly the way to go? I don’t know. I don’t have all the answers, and I definitely don’t believe there is a right or a wrong way, but I too am just a mom who desperately wants her little boy to have his own special memories about these very special events. I too have tried banning everything, but the truth is – we can’t. Every Easter there will be easter bunnies, easter egg hunts and chocolate wherever you look – in the shops, at their schools and even at relatives houses, and we’ll never be able to take it all away, because we will just hurt them in the process. So, I thought a bit, and what if Instead of teaching our kids to see the wrong in everything, we taught them to see Jesus in everything. Instead of banning and taking everything away, help them see these events in everything, and no matter how old they get, or where they may be or look, they will automatically see Jesus and what these celebrations mean in everything.
So here are 9 simple ways to make your Easter EGGstraordinary:
1. Resurrection eggs
I started this tradition with Aryan last year and it’s definitely my favorite easter tradition to do with him. This is such a special way to connect easter eggs with the story of Jesus. So basically, it’s like an easter advent calendar, and you can pick how long before Easter you would like to start (we do it a week before). Each egg has something special on the inside that has to do with the resurrection story. You can also include things like a Bible verse and a song that you can sing together. Ours are as follows:
- Bread Crumb: Jesus ate dinner with his disciples – Luke 22:14,15 – Song: Hosanna Hillsong
- Cross: The next day Jesus died on the cross – John 19:17-18 – Song: Lead me to the cross (Hillsong United)
- Strip of Cloth: He was wrapped in cloth and placed in a tomb – John 19:40 – Song: Nothing but the blood (Jesus Culture)
- Rock: A stone was placed in front of the tomb – Matthew 27:59-60 Song: Forever (Kari Jobe)
- Empty egg: Jesus’ friends came to the tomb and saw the stone had been moved. The tomb was empty! – Luke 24:1-3 Song: Victors Crown (Darlene Zschech)
- Chocolate: Jesus is alive! That’s the sweet surprise of Easter – Matthew 28:5-6 Song: I am a child of God
In this way we create excitement and they WANT to learn more, because they cant wait to open the next egg and find the surprise. This also guarantees some intimate bonding time between you and your little one as you get to read and worship together, turning it into a very intimate and special tradition.
2. Easter Story Rocks
Before Aryan’s birth I have decided that I would raise Aryan in God’s Word and for His Will, and that Aryan would learn the Word of God from the start. He is however only 2 years old and at that age everything is visual. They use their senses to learn and although he knows his Bible is his “Jesus book”, he does not yet understand the content inside it, and this is why I love the idea of story stones so much. It’s a fun activity to do together and it can be used for years to come. Paint a few pictures on stones (I can’t paint so I drew it with koi’s) and use your stones to teach your toddler the resurrection story. Your toddler can also play with the stones and soon enough they will use the stones and what you have told them to create their own story and in this way they start to learn it in a way that their little minds can understand. Start small and simple (we are only using 6 eggs as per our resurrection eggs) and every year you can add a stone or two as you go into more detail as they get older. If you don’t like artsy projects why not support a local company and it’ll be a surprise for you both? I know “oh the stories you’ll tell” https://www.facebook.com/Oh-the-stories-youll-tell-112289613633407/ make beautiful story rocks.
3. Christian Easter Egg Hunt
Oh my, easter egg hunts are one of my utmost favorite memories as a little girl. We used to have little competitions and the one who collected the most eggs always received the grand prize – a super big chocolate easter bunny. These memories of running around the garden with all of my cousins, giggling and laughing, a scream of excitement every now and then are some of the sweetest memories I get to hold dear, and its definitely something I hope Aryan could have one day. So, I have decided that Aryan too will get to make these memories, but we will do it with a twist. Instead we will hide different eggs with different little clues in them leading up to the grand prize. Each egg will have a little clue that is centered around Christ and off course a sweet little treat, all leading up to the grand prize. This way we have more fun for a longer period of time, they get to learn more about Easter and we limit the sugar rush. Win-win. Some of your clues could include:
- The people said Hosanna, the next clue is by a banana
- Jesus prayed in the garden at night, look by a lamp that gives you light
- Our sins were removed when Jesus died, hurry your next clue is hiding outside
- He is risen, He is no longer dead. Run real quick to where the birdies are fed.
Pinterest has a ton of ideas and you are guaranteed to find some fun clues on there.
4. Give meaning to the eggs and the bunny
Explain to your child that we see a lot of eggs in Easter because an egg has no beginning and no end symbolizing life eternal and how God is everywhere. An egg also has a protective shell symbolizing God’s love and protection for and over us. An egg also has a heart of Gold symbolizing the true meaning of life. Last but not least, an egg symbolizes new life which is exactly why Jesus died for us on the cross – to give us new life. So what about the bunny? Well bunnies are known for their fertility and is also a symbol of new life. Jesus died to give all of his children new life.
In doing this we give meaning to the egg and easter bunny and now whenever they go out they will immediately identify the egg and bunny with Jesus and what He did for us – now they’ll see beauty in it and not just a “banned tradition”.
5. Last Supper
Jesus had supper with His Disciples, why not introduce a “last supper” with your family. A time where you all get to prepare a large family meal together, then dine around a dining room table and you could even read the resurrection story from the Bible before desert is served. You could also make a prayer chain and give thanks to Jesus for what He has done for us, and wash each other’s feet.
6. Christ-centered Easter basket
We all love a little easter treat and I absolutely love spoiling Aryan with a very special easter basket every year. But instead of filling your child’s easter basket with only sweet treats and toys,rather add something that could draw them closer to God. A little reminder that all the chocolates and sweet treats are just for fun. This could include a new Bible, or storybook about Easter, cross necklace or armband, maybe a kids worship CD, or a Bible themed coloring book.
7. Attend a Church service together
Oh man, nothing sets the atmosphere better than attending a Church service as a family. You could leave the easter basket and easter egg hunt for the afternoon, since Jesus comes first. I know during the lockdown we cant necessarily go out, but watch the service together on tv or fill your house with some worship music and worship and pray together as a family.
8. Do Christ Centered easter crafts together
Pinterest has a ton of arts and crafts activities you could do with your toddler. This year Aryan and I made a little egg carton cross to hang on our front door and a little empty tomb from paper plates. Another cute idea is making a mini Easter garden together.
9. Bake resurrection cookies together
This is such an awesome way to teach the resurrection story to your little one while you are having tons of fun together. I saw these on fb and credit goes to Top Chef TZN https://www.facebook.com/Top-Chef-TZN-583459395482926/?tn-str=k*F .
You will need:
- 1 cup of pecan nuts
- Ziplock bag
- 1 tb spoon vinegar
- 3 egg whites
- 1 cup of sugar
- Pinch of salt
- Now heat the oven up to 150 degrees. Place the nuts into your ziplock bag and break it into small pieces using a wooden spoon. Use this to explain to your toddler that the Roman soldiers also hit Jesus after He was taken captive. (John 19:1-3)
- Open the vinegar and smell it. Pour 1 teaspoon of vinegar into your bowl.
Discuss: Did you know Jesus had to drink vinegar when He got thirsty on the cross? (John 19:28-30)
- Add the egg whites to the vinegar. Eggs symbolizes new life.
Discuss: Jesus gave His life so that we could get eternal life with Him in Heaven. (John 10:10-11)
- Pour a pinch of salt into your hand. Let your toddler taste it. Add a pinch of salt to your bowl.
Discuss: The salt symbolizes the tears that Jesus’s followers cried. It also symbolizes the bitterness of our sins. (Luke 23:27)
- Taste the mixture – it still doesn’t taste right. Now add a cup of sugar.
Discuss: The best part about Easter is that Jesus died for our sins because He loves us, and He wants us to know Him and trust Him. (Psalms 34:8 and John 3:1-6)
- Beat your mixture with an electric blender on high for 12-15 minutes until it forms stiff points.
Discuss: The white symbolizes our purity in God’s eyes. If we believe in Jeus, then our sins are washed away and we are white as snow before God. (John 3:1-3)
- You can now add your nuts.
- Place a strip of parchment paper on your baking tray. Place a spoonful of your mixture on your baking tray.
Discuss: Each heap looks like a little tomb in which Jesus’ body was placed. (Mat 27:57-60)
- Place your baking tray into the oven and close the door. Bake for 10 minutes and switch off the oven.
Discuss: The closed door symbolizes that the tomb that was closed by a large rock.
- Go sleep. Leave the cookies in the oven overnight.
Discuss: It’s difficult not being able to eat all the cookies tonight? Jesus’ followers felt the same way when they had to leave Jesus’ body in the tomb. (Matthew 28:1-9)
- Open the oven on Easter Sunday and eat a cookie. The cookie should be hollow on the inside – it’s empty on the inside.
Discuss: On the third day Jesus rose from the dead and the tomb was empty. Jesus is alive!
Enjoy the cookies 🙂
And just like that Easter turned into a fun, intimate and special experience where we can not only celebrate Jesus and what He did for us, but we can also teach our kids the message in a way he/she can understand and will remember for the rest of their lives. These traditions not only celebrate the true meaning of Easter, but will bring your family closer in this very special time and will create memories that your kids will always hold dear and would want to pass on to their children and grandchildren. There is just something incredible when you choose to see beauty in everything.
Happy Easter everyone!
Aryan & Mommy