Making holidays memorable is biblical. In the Old Testament, God designed multiple annual feasts to be reminders of His work among His people and provided them family-centered celebrations to help them share their faith with the next generations. Christmas and Easter traditions are wonderful—opening doors for us in the twenty-first century to share our faith in the same way.
But I’m afraid that the Elf on the Shelf and the Easter Bunny get more credit than they deserve. We need to rethink the opportunities that Christmas and Easter give us to put the spotlight on Jesus. That’s what we were thinking when we were working on the new D6 Family Easter Adventure Kit. We want families of all ages to have a fresh way to celebrate holidays that keeps the focus on Jesus. As we anticipate Easter, we want to prepare our hearts and our children’s hearts to know who Jesus is and why He suffered. And we want everyone to be ready to celebrate His resurrection.
We provide all the components—a series of cards that include a family devotion, questions to talk about together, and a prayer for each day. There’s also a couple of ideas for family activities that extend the opportunity to make a memory with an impact—something your family can do to reinforce the day’s devotion. There’s also a very simple kid’s craft to further layer on the truth you are considering in that day’s lesson. It’s so simple you don’t need any directions and you don’t need to go buy anything! There’s also an idea for a snack of some sort that matches the day’s Scripture.
We don’t stop there, though. We know how important stories are to build connections and make truth memorable. Remember, this was the teaching style that Jesus used. So we also have written a series of adventure stories for your family to read together. Independent readers could enjoy the stories on their own, but reading them aloud to one another will carry more impact. (There are questions for discussion for each chapter at the end of the storybook too.) These stories allow children to put themselves in the middle of the Bible accounts of the Passion Week, seeing it with new eyes. They may also transfer the idea to zoom into other Bible stories and imagine themselves as firsthand observers.
We’re still not done. We know families enjoy hide-and-seek fun with Easter eggs, so we’ve added a small card for each day that you can hide to also point to the daily theme. We’ve included some alternate ideas on each card too—such as hiding 100 cotton balls to help your children better picture the Good Shepherd who searched for His lost sheep.
So imagine that you get up in the morning and read the devotion together at the breakfast table. You spend a minute or two talking about it and praying together. Then at lunch, there’s a snack that reminds you of the morning devotion, and after school you make a simple craft focused on the truth. Your family plays a game or does an easy activity to further reinforce the idea. After dinner, someone hides the small card (or something else the card suggests) and everyone searches for it. Then at bedtime you read the story together. The layers of reminders add up and stay with you. That message is inescapable! That memory is indelible!
The point is to help you see two things: (1) Easter is not relegated to time at church. (2) Family discipleship is natural and valuable. Your children will learn to love what you love. When we focus on Jesus—not only on spring break or new clothes or chocolate bunnies—they will understand more about God’s great love and great gift. Our hearts will rejoice together in the wonderful truth of the resurrection of Jesus Christ—the real reason for Easter.
I’m not saying you need to quit hiding eggs. But here is a wonderful collection of ideas that will allow you to magnify Jesus in new ways for this holiday.
FAQs (We wish!)
Why are there 12 cards for one week?
We want to introduce Jesus before we actually start Passion Week with the Triumphal Entry. Our idea is that the three Sundays before Palm Sunday will give an opportunity to see the Messiah in action through studying John 10, 11, and 12. On Palm Sunday through Easter Sunday, there is a card for each day. The final card is for the Sunday after Easter, a way to point to the rest of the story as Jesus commissions His disciples to share the good news with others.
Of course, you can double up or stretch them out, any way that works for your household. We will not be knocking on your door to see what you have decided.
Is this only an adventure for families with young children?
No. The transfer to grandparents is easy to see, and modern technology lets us participate with grandchildren even if they are miles away. But those with older children or without children can still benefit from the devotions and discussions. I’m bold enough to believe they will enjoy the stories and the snacks too! Share with a neighbor, treat your coworkers to a snack, or use a conversation starter with friends to discover an opportunity to share the Easter story with others.
Tell me more about the Adventure Stories.
I love Adventures in Odyssey’s Imagination Station, where children can travel back to Bible times and become part of the story. I think these stories feel similar to that but with a multigenerational twist. A grandmother helps her two grandsons see themselves as part of the Bible narrative and join in the emotions and drama of the true accounts. It just happened that the boys in the story have the same names and ages as my grandsons! We’ve been careful to be true to the Scripture but to add some adventure and humor to the boys’ imaginary journeys.
This seems like too much to expect for our busy family! Help!
We are real people who know this seems like Easter overload to some of you. There’s no Easter Adventure police. You do what fits for your family. If the morning devotions and bedtime story are enough, great. But all the tools are there if you want to make a strong impact for twelve days. Or you may make several crafts on a Saturday or hide the twelve small cards along with Easter eggs. Wonderful! Just do something to magnify Jesus this Easter!
Are there directions anywhere for the crafts?
Look for a Pinterest board for D6 Easter Adventure. You can see more about the crafts there—and for other ideas we didn’t have space to include. We know there are children who learn best kinetically—by using their hands to touch something. So we wanted to add that dimension to the family activities. All the crafts are simple, though. Be brave and try a few! It’s not a competition! You can make a refrigerator gallery and tell others about them, photograph them for grandparents, hang them on an “Easter tree,” or use them as favors or greeting cards at a local nursing home.
What do you think about doing this again next Easter?
Let me ask you: Are you repeating other traditions next year? Of course! Why not? By next Easter, your family will be ready for the reinforcement. You can do some of the ideas you didn’t do this year, repeat favorites, or think of your own variations. Find a good shoebox to store them in and be ready next spring to repeat the adventure!
Could I use these twelve lessons some other way?
We also think this Easter Adventure has possibilities beyond the Passion Week. There are 12 days of devotions—plenty for a series at children’s church, a neighborhood Bible club, Vacation Bible School, camp, or Wednesday night classes. While the adventure kit is designed for families, with a little purposeful creativity, it can provide a great basis for lesson plans for other situations too.
If you would like to order a D6 EveryDay Easter Adventure you can go HERE!