Easter egg hunts… resurrection eggs… egg decorating… resurrection rolls… Easter baskets… matching family outfits for the Instagram picture…
I’m a mom and I know the pressure there is to make each Easter one to remember. One year I purchased rather large Easter baskets. I filled them with bunnies and toys from the dollar store. And there was still room. So, I went back to the store for more candy, grabbing the bag with the choices that no one really likes because the gum is already hard and the wrappers stick to the suckers. You know… the “filler” candy. But a full Easter basket was going to make it an Easter to “remember.”
But what will they remember? What about your home’s Easter celebration will your children take with them into their own homes when they’re grown? Our family was challenged a few years ago to live this truth for our children and with our children. We were challenged to pray about whether we were filling our passion week with “fillers” or with the good stuff.
My favorite Easter was 5 years ago. There were no matching outfits and no bows. My favorite Easter outfit was tennis shoes, jeans, and a t-shirt. The only clothing we purchased were t-shirts that benefited a Christian organization that was near to our hearts. Instead of matching dresses, our money fed bellies in Africa. Instead of new sandals, our money helped train women so they could support their families.
Easter can easily become so crowded with activities. Some years, we’ve spent more time cutting out construction paper palm leaves than reading Luke 19 and learning about the Triumphal Entry we used those palm leaves to re-enact. Some years, we’ve spent more time making and eating resurrection rolls than actually talking about the resurrection itself. Good, fun activities, but like the “filler” candy in my children’s Easter basket, ultimately the activities come up short.
“But God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ dies for us” (Romans 5:8).
“Therefore, as one trespass led to condemnation for all men, so one act of righteousness leads to justification and life for all men. For as by the one man’s disobedience the many were made sinners, so by the one man’s obedience the many will be made righteous” (Romans 5:18).
This is the GOOD stuff. This is the BEST stuff. This truth is what we should be sure takes center stage in our homes this Easter season. This Easter will be another of my favorites. Blake and I have already decided that there won’t be new clothes or fancy shoes. We will take the budget I had planned for our Easter outfits and give it to the Great Commission Offering—our churches offering that goes directly to the proclamation of the gospel. It’s these tangible acts of celebration that I hope my children take with them as they grow.
And what about our Instagram picture? Our well-loved “I love my church” t-shirts, jeans, and tennis shoes will do. They work better for crawling around on the nursery floor anyway.