If you are a Christian, you may find yourself wondering what in the world you are celebrating on Easter. What is it about rabbits and eggs that has to do with Jesus? Well, the answer is, nothing at all! These are symbols of sex, reproduction and fertility.
Stories vary about the origin of our Easter traditions. Even the name “Easter” has controversial roots. Regardless of where the ideas came from though, I just can’t bring myself to get into the spirit of Easter with an egg hunt. And no way am I going to tell my children that a giant bunny came and dropped them all in the yard!
The tradition is fun though, and I can’t judge anyone for wanting to participate what seems to be a cute, innocent tradition. But for those of us moms who are looking to change the way they celebrate this holiday, I have piled together a few of what I thought were the best ideas.
Lent is not just for Catholics. Fasting has proven benefits and is one of the best ways to recharge your body, mind, and spirit. Lent goes for about six weeks, beginning on Ash Wednesday and going until the day before Easter. But if you aren’t a Catholic, there’s no rules to this. You can start anytime and quit anytime. Even if it’s just for 24 hours. This year I plan to fast from screens-tv, computer, cell phone, etc.-just on the day before Easter.
Lent is a great tradition, and a perfect teaching tool for kids. It teaches them will-power and self-control, and also opens the doors to thinking about Jesus and his sacrifice. Every time your child gives up sweets, video games, or a favorite toy, they can be reminded of how Jesus gave up his life, and how much harder that must have been.
2. Seeing the sunrise
Every Easter I do this. Usually the sun comes up around 6 am. I’m up before that though, making coffee and getting myself dressed and showered. There is something about quiet, dark early mornings that I love. This time is when I am the most productive, the most thoughtful, and the most energetic.
Not everyone is a morning person, but everyone should try this tradition at least once in their life. Find a nice quiet beach or prairie where you won’t have any obstructions and there will be a spot to sit and drink your coffee. Soak in the light, sing a few hymns, and pray. It’s beautiful, you won’t regret it.
3. Make a resurrection garden
These things are so cute, and there are so many ways you can go with this! Add trees, bushes, sticks, rocks, little animal figurines, and flowers. You can even recreate a little pond if you’d like. This is just one suggestion from Pinterest. Check out my Pinterest page for even more ideas!
4. Plan a resurrection scavenger hunt
In this scavenger hunt, everything you are looking for is symbolic of some aspect of Jesus, or his resurrection. Way better than an egg! You can click on the image to go download a free printable!
5. Make a big Passover Meal
- To commemorate the Last Supper, you could have a Passover supper. A traditional Passover would be eaten on the floor, lying or sitting on carpets and pillows. This symbolizes the comfort of freedom from the Egyptians.
- There would be a Seder Plate, arranged with six different food items that are each symbolic of different aspects of the Passover. These foods should also be available in larger amounts around the table for guests to eat.
- Each guest has a small dish of salt water, which is used as dip for their greens. As this drips from the vegetables, it is said to represent the dripping of tears from the Jews in captivity, and is a reminder of their suffering.
- It is also customary for each guest to drink four glasses of wine. Four is a number very symbolic to the Jews as they exited slavery. For more about the significance of the number four, click on this link. You can provide grape juice for children, or anyone who would rather abstain.
- A last tradition would be to include three Matzot. These are three pieces of unleavened bread stacked on top of each other on a decorative plate or cloth. The top representing a crown, the middle representing wisdom, and the bottom intelligence. For more about their significance, click on this link.
Have a Happy Resurrection Day!