Hunting For Christ at Easter

Easter is full of fun traditions, and it can be hard to decide how to integrate the fun secular ones with the more Christ-centered ones. I have struggled with this concept over the years as we invite both Christians and non-Christians to celebrate Easter lunch with us. I want to be welcoming to all, provide fun memories, and ensure that our children remember the reason we celebrate Easter.

A favorite Easter board book written by Michelle Medlock Adams that I have read to my children for the past 12 years states, “Okay, now I get it. The Easter Bunny is okay, And Easter eggs are fun. But Easter’s not about that stuff. It’s all about God’s Son.”

The most important step in creating meaningful Easter traditions that celebrate Jesus is to have an intentional plan that you prepare ahead of time. This way, you will be committed to the idea and will be able to follow through even if the day is full of relatives, food, and other fun.

Jesus was all about celebrations and attended many, but He always made sure to remind the partygoers that He was the reason for their festivals. “Do this in remembrance of Me” should be our guiding reminder when it comes to our traditions at Easter (Luke 22:19, ESV).

An Easter egg hunt is a classic activity, so how can we use this tradition to point toward the spiritual significance of Easter? Here are four ways to create intentional moments for encountering Jesus during your family’s Easter gathering.

1. Read a Book

Before you begin your egg hunt, read a book or poem, or orally retell a story about the significance of the Easter egg. Numerous biblical picture books provide metaphors about Easter eggs. Gather the children around you where they can’t see the other adults who are hiding the eggs. Read them a story while they wait. It will keep them busy and provide a connection for them between the eggs they are hunting and Jesus. You could even simply read the account of Jesus’ crucifixion and resurrection from scripture. A bonus activity could be using brown, crinkled butcher paper attached to a hula hoop (representing the rock blocking the tomb) to roll away before they are allowed into the yard or park area for their egg hunt!

2. Scripture Game

Place a small portion of a scripture inside of each egg. Depending on the ages of the children, parents or older children can help the younger ones with reading. When all the eggs are collected, the kids attempt to put the scripture pieces together to make a verse. Read the verse with the children and then give them each a larger treat as a reward. Attach this treat to a bookmark or scripture card with the verse written on it as a reminder. Choose a scripture that highlights the true meaning of Easter and points to Jesus’ redeeming work on the cross.

3. Resurrection Eggs

Resurrection eggs are eggs that have one small item inside that represents a part of the Easter story. For example, a leaf to represent the triumphal entry, a thorn to represent Jesus’ thorn of crowns, and so on. While children sort their loot from the egg hunt and are kept quiet while munching their sweets, they use resurrection eggs to tell the story of Jesus dying on the cross. There are many free resources available to guide you through the 12 scriptures that coincide with the items inside the eggs. You could even have these eggs be a unique color and include them in the egg hunt. Simply instruct children that if they find an egg of a particular color, bring it to you, and they will find out what is in it at the end of the hunt. Walk them through each verse, allowing a different child to open an egg each time.

4. Christ-Centered Decorations

Decorating for celebrations is always fun. There are many ways to use decor that can point to Jesus on Easter. Scripture cards at place settings and Easter lilies as centerpieces or crosses all remind the family of why they are gathering. Incorporate some of this decor into the Easter egg hunt by constructing a larger cross. Use scrap wood, foraged branches, or purchase some lumber to construct a cross. When the children have emptied all their eggs of candy, have them put their empty eggs at the foot of the cross. Remind them that the empty eggs represent the empty tomb and that placing the eggs at the foot of the cross reminds us that Jesus took our sin away through His death on the cross.

5. Meaningful Celebrations

The more we integrate Jesus into our Easter traditions, the more meaningful and memorable the celebration will be! Using these kid-focused activities allows the children to have fun and learn about the true meaning of Easter. I have also found that by centering the teaching on the children, any non-Christian family members who are visiting feel less threatened but also are able to hear the Gospel explained. It’s a win-win.

I wish you a day of celebration centered on Jesus. Happy Easter!

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