Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Thoughts on Easter...

I'm thinking a lot about how we'll celebrate Easter this weekend, and wishing I'd given it more thought before it snuck up on me. Since I only have a few minutes before Aaron's nap comes to an end, I'll quickly get to my point: I'm worried that all the fun with Easter eggs and candy and stuffed animals is going to get confused with the reality of the day. Easter is a celebration of Jesus' crucifixion and resurrection - he paid for each of our sins with his own life. So how do I keep Jesus from becoming a fictional character amidst the egg hunts and photos with the Easter bunny? Can I keep Jesus the focus of our celebrations and still partake in all the cultural trappings that come with the day? I know a lot of you out there have young children, too, and are perhaps struggling with this same question. So what's your game plan? How will you make Jesus the star of your Easter celebration?


maryrudolph said...

I'm struggling with the same thing. It's such a hard concept to explain to small children. At Christmas it's much easier...he was born. It's more concrete. But how to explain the events of Easter - so difficult! I didn't even try too hard this year. I think it might come easier as he gets older. Maybe that's not a good approach, but I can't figure out how to make him understand! We've read a little about it and I've told him about it, but that's all. But to make myself feel better, he doesn't really know about the Easter Bunny much either (he knows he exists, but doesn't know anything else!)

Rebecca said...

I've hesitated to comment because I'm not a parent, so I can only speak from my experience growing up. When I was a kid, Easter baskets and a new Easter dress coexisted with going to church and talking about true meaning of Easter. As I walked through the mall last week, though, I was observing just how big a holiday this has become: can we say photos with the Easter Bunny, who, cynically, I suggest is in cahoots with Santa and the retailers to create a gigantic holiday of indulgence? I digress.

My point was going to be that I think it's OK to have a balance, and you will find where that balance is for your family. You are doing the right things by taking time to think through the question, and by desiring that your son know how important Easter is.

In some sense, I think that the chocolates and new clothes helped to make the day special in ways a small child can understand, so I always knew Easter was different, although I was older before I understood the true meaning. Even as an adult, the meaning of Easter is greater every year, as it will be for Aaron as he grows.

So talk about it, take Aaron to church to worship Jesus on Sunday, and by doing so, teach him in the most important way: by observing this holiday with joy yourselves.

Love you!