Saturday, March 23, 2013

Easter ideas ... sharing the Good News

Easter is a beautiful time of the year. I love waking each morning and being surprised by new leaves on bushes and trees and new budding flowers. New life is everywhere!  The One who created me and you calls these tender new leaves and blossoms into being!  Even more beautiful is God’s loving story of Easter that creates new life for me and for you … God’s sacrifice of His beloved and only Son.  Jesus, who was without sin, died on the cross for OUR sin.  When we believe in Jesus and give our life to Him, we are promised eternal life. Eternal!  Forever! It is hard to even get my mind around the faithful, forgiving and merciful and gracious love of our God.  Perhaps, like me, you are looking for some new ways to honor Him, to celebrate Easter and to remember God’s precious gift of eternal life. Perhaps you, too, are seeking ways to get your mind around the Good News. Below are some thoughts for this Holy Season as we journey, together, toward the Cross ...

- celebrate Maundy Thursday together as a family and discuss the meaning of the Last Supper from      Mark 14:22 …

- create a “resurrection garden” together as a family … use Mary and the angel from your Christmas Nativity, create a cross from twigs, add small, colorful plants and moss … use as your Easter       centerpiece …

- plan a neighborhood or family Easter egg hunt … invite each child to bring a dozen plastic eggs with one letter on each egg: J-E-S-U-S-I-S-R-I-S-E-N … during the egg hunt, each child is to find 12 eggs that spell out “JESUS IS RISEN” … children often end up helping each other find “the letter” they need …everyone gets the same number of eggs … children can decorate an egg carton, brought from home, to collect their eggs … with each space of the egg container listing the letter needed …

- tell the “Resurrection Story” with twelve story eggs … this is something our family began many, many decades ago and we still use that “original set” on Easter Sunday with our grandchildren …

  • take twelve large plastic eggs (numbered from 1-12) and place a trinket in each egg and place the entire scripture that applies inside the egg … after all the eggs have been found, family members open an egg (beginning with #1) and take turns reading the Easter Story to the family … (or the eggs can be left in a bowl on the dining room table and shared prior to or after your Easter meal) …             
egg 1 … small bread piece; “take, eat, this is My body …” Mark 14:22
egg 2 … three dimes; “so they counted out for him thirty silver coins …” Matthew 26:15
egg 3 … small dime store rooster; “this very night, before the rooster crows …” Matthew 26:34
egg 4 … small crown of thorns; “they wove a crown of thorns …” Mark 15:17
egg 5 … nail; “then they led Him away to crucify Him … “ Matthew 27:31
egg 6 … small cross; “carrying His own cross ... here they crucified Him …” John 19:17-18
egg 7 … dice: “let us decide by lot who will get this clothes …” John 19:23-24
egg 8 … spear/toothpick; “and one of the soldiers pierced Jesus’ side with a spear …” John 19:34
egg 9 … white cloth; “took the body, wrapped it in a clean linen cloth …” Matthew 27:57-59
egg 10 … cinnamon sticks; “brought spices so that they might go to anoint Jesus’ body …”
                Mark 16:1
egg 11 … smooth stone; “make the tomb secure …” Matthew 27:62-65
egg 12 … empty egg; “He Has Risen! He is not here!” Mark 16:5-6

- peek at this lovely website for Easter ideas (and for other family traditions):  (jellybean prayer eggs and Easter Story Egg Ornaments and Devotional)

- send an Easter card to family and friends instead of the usual Christmas card greeting … take a family picture in spring wildflowers … include a scripture verse about new life in Christ (2 Corinthians 5:17) …

- host a neighborhood Easter egg dyeing party … each family can bring a canned good for the
neighborhood food pantry … read the Easter Story …

- have an older child tell the Easter story as if he were reporting the news on TV … tell the story from Matthew 26-28 … report what the people must have been seeing and feeling …

- prepare a Easter basket for another family or for someone who might have a need this season …
leave the basket, as a family, anonymously on their porch … include scriptures of His Hope and            Presence …

- serve Easter morning breakfast in an Easter basket … use toothpicks to anchor a scripture in
breakfast rolls …

- make Easter “Promise Eggs” … pierce both ends of raw eggs and carefully blow out the contents ... decorate the egg … write one of God’s Promises on a small slip of paper and tuck it carefully inside the   egg … give the egg (or eggs) as a gift to someone else … as a reminder of God’s great and precious promises …
  • For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believe in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.   John 3:16
  • Therefore if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old things have passed away; behold, new things have come.   2 Corinthians 5:17
  • And we have seen and testify that the Father has sent the Son as Savior of the world. 1 John 4:14
  • Truly, truly, I say to you, he who believes has everlasting life.    John 6:47   
  • For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God.      Ephesians 2:8
  • Know that the Lord, Himself; It is He who made us, and not we ourselves; We are His people and the sheep of His pasture.   Psalm 100:3
  • For I am convinced that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities nor things present, nor things to come, nor powers, nor height, nor depth, nor any other created thing, shall be able to separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.   Romans 8:38-39
  • But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.  Roman 5:8
  • I love those who love me, and those who seek me diligently will find me.   Proverbs 8:17
  • These things I have spoken unto you, that in me you you might have peace. In the world you shall have tribulation; but take courage; I have overcome the world.   John 16:33
  • Do not fear, for I am with you; Do not anxiously look about you, for I am your God. I will strengthen you, surely I will help you, Surely I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.   Isaiah 41:10
  • Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made know to God; and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.   Philippians 4:6,7
  • The Lord will give strength to His people; the Lord will bless His people with peace.   Psalm 29:11
  • Peace I leave with you, My peace I give to you; not as the world gives, do I give to you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be fearful.   John 14:27
  • I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly.   John 10:10
  • For He made Him who knew no sin to be sin on our behalf, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.   2 Corinthians 5:21
  • Draw near to God and He will draw near to you  . James 4:8
  • God is our refuge and strength, an very present help in trouble.   Psalm 46:1-2
  • For you are all sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus.  Galatians 3:26
  • The Lord is faithful, and He will strengthen and protect you from the evil one.  2 Thessalonians 3: 3
  • My grace is sufficient for you, for power is perfected in weakness.  2 Corinthians 12:9
  • The Lord is gracious and merciful; slow to anger and great in loving kindness . Psalm 145:8
  • Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they shall be satisfied.   Matthew 5:6
  • I can do all things through Him who strengthens me.  Philippians 4:13
  • He gives strength to the weary and to him who lacks might He increases power.  Isaiah 40:29
  • If we confess our sins, He is faithful and righteous to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.  1 John 1:9
  • Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world gives.  John 14:27
  • Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He will make your paths straight.  Proverb 3:5,6
  • Cast all your anxiety upon Him, for He cares for you.  1 Peter 5:7
  • Lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the age.   Matthew 28:20
                   Please leave YOUR ideas for sharing the gift of Easter here (under comment) …
                    Blessed Easter to you and yours as you seek to celebrate God’s Good News!
                                                 because HE IS RISEN! Karen

No comments: