With all the pretty pastel-colored décor around at Easter, you may be looking for new ways to teach your family about God's ultimate sacrifice. Here are some practical suggestions for creating teachable moments throughout the weeks leading to Easter. These ideas help families respond together to God's indescribable gift.
As a family, focus on the "newness" of Easter. Because of what Jesus did, everyone can have a "new" life in Christ. This is something to celebrate! There are many passages that talk about "newness" in the Bible. Consider these two.
"Therefore we were buried with Him by baptism into death, in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, so we too may walk in a new way of life" (Rom. 6:4).
"Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old things have passed away, and look, new things have come" (2 Cor. 5:17).
This Easter, encourage your family to focus on the "newness" Christ brings with the following family activities.
Prepare a New Meal
Look through cookbooks and plan a meal together that includes all new recipes, including an appetizer, entrée, side dishes, salad, bread, and dessert. Allow each family member to be in charge of one of the recipes, with parental help for younger children. Children may even create Easter place mats that tell the Easter story. This is a great start to your family's Easter festivities as you discuss Jesus' last meal with His disciples.
Learn a New Game
Make Easter afternoon fun by choosing a family-friendly game that everyone can learn and enjoy. Or play several family games by having each member choose his favorite.
Love on a New Neighbor
Whether someone just moved in down the street or there's a widow you haven't yet met around the corner, introduce your family and take her a gift of flowers or freshly baked goodies. Or invite neighbors over to your home for a cookie decorating party. Then invite neighbors to church with you for Easter.
Sing a New Song
Talk about the joy Christ brings with new life. Learn a new worship song or perhaps an old hymn that your family has never sung before. Younger children will enjoy creating motions to go with the song. Make this your family anthem this year and sing it often. Play a musical instrument as part of your song or create your own for the kids to enjoy.
Create a New Puzzle
Read the Easter morning events in the Gospels and then pass out paper, crayons, markers, and paint to all your family members. Encourage them to create a picture of the resurrection story to share with one another. Then cut the pictures into jigsaw puzzle pieces. Enjoy putting the new puzzles together!
Go on a Nature Hunt for Something New
Grab your camera and go for a family nature hunt. Take pictures of flowers, vegetation, insects, or animals you've never seen before. Print the pictures and make a scrapbook. Investigate your new finds and write about each new item in your scrapbook.
Paint a New Family Mural
Tape a long roll of paper to the floor. Make footprints and handprints of every family member, along with his or her name and the date. Hang the family mural in a hallway or a high-traffic area of your home. Create a new one every year and talk about how each family member has grown, not only physically but spiritually.
Plant Something New
If you already have a flower garden, plant vegetables together (or vice versa). Or buy inexpensive seed packets of any kind. Place each one in an envelope and decorate the envelopes. Give these as Easter gifts to Sunday School teachers or other church workers on Easter.
There are many ways — besides baskets, eggs, and candy — to celebrate the love God has shown. Consider what your family enjoys and what's age-appropriate for each family member and enjoy new activities this Easter season!