Easter is coming.
Now I have to be honest, as a mom I am completely intimidated by this holiday.
On one hand, I feel like the expectations on moms for this holiday are crazy. Handmade Easter baskets and well-organized adorable outfits, special Easter crafts and Easter Bunny visits. Somehow, this holiday has paralleled Christmas in its materialism and excess, and that frustrates me.
On the other hand, when it comes to the importance of Easter and its true meaning, I find myself just as overwhelmed when it comes to my children. What am I teaching them about the meaning of Easter? How am I leading them through Lent? If I am not guiding them through a day-by-day Easter study to prepare their hearts before April 1st, am I even doing a good job as a mom?
Whoa. Hold up. Take a breath, Emily.
As with most things in my life, I have to take a step back and look at the whole picture. I have a tendency to get so lost in the swirl of chaos and expectations around me that I get lost and overwhelmed, usually leading to me giving up altogether.
So I stopped and asked myself this: what is the ONE thing that I want my children to know about Jesus and His resurrection?
And the first thing that came to mind was the words that our pastors say as they baptize people at our church…
Buried with Christ, raised to newness of life…
There it is.
There are a lot of angles you can take when learning and teaching about Easter, particularly with your children. But this year, the one thing that I really want my children to learn and know is what it means to be made new.
We were buried therefore with him by baptism into death, in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, we too might walk in newness of life. -Romans 6:4
I want my children to know that before Jesus captures our hearts, life might look okay on the outside, but there is a bleakness inside that cannot be brightened. And on the other side, when Jesus is invited in, there is then a light that cannot be hidden. I want them to know that the reason that light, that joy, that peace is possible, is because of Jesus and His willing sacrifice for us. That when Jesus walked out of that tomb, He carried with Him the chance for each of us to have that sweet newness, that second chance, that gift of grace that cannot be taken from us.
And while I can talk and talk until I am blue in the face, I also know that the only way my children will begin to see the truth of this is if I am living it out by example. It is my job as their mom to be walking in that newness each day and showing them what it means to be beautifully and imperfectly His.
If participating in all of the different Easter activities is your thing, that’s awesome! If it’s not, cut yourselves some slack and just focus on what matters most to you.
This Easter, while I may not match up with all of the expectations and hype of the season, if I have given my children a glimpse of what it means to be new in Christ through His resurrection, I know that I have done my part in showing them what it all truly means.