Making Easter More Meaningful This Year

By Published on March 31, 2024

What does Easter look like for your family? Does it look like quality time, a big Sunday dinner, hunts for decorated eggs, baskets for the kids filled with treats, and a minute recognition of the non-secular “reason for the Easter season”?

It’s not that these things are bad, per se. Yet, in taking an earnest look at our own hearts and actions, do we tend to place these Easter novelties and traditions as priorities over Jesus and the sacrifice He made for everyone on Earth? Do we spend more time and attention worrying about the meals to prepare, the eggs to fill, and the little gifts to get each of our children than we do sharing His Gospel message and holding its weightiness in the depths of our hearts? 

Remembering Our Rescue

Rather than a celebration featuring bunnies and chocolate while giving a mere nod to the Gospel message on Easter Sunday, what if we redirected our focus to its true importance and impact in our lives?

That message is Jesus’s sacrifice and triumph over death for each of us. Jesus loved us so much that He died “while we were still sinners” (Romans 5:8). He picked us up out of the muck and mire and set our feet upon solid ground (Psalm 40:2). Plus, God sent the Holy Spirit to teach us all things and will remind us of everything Jesus said to us (John 14:26). He also sent dear brothers and sisters into our lives to grow us in the faith, showing us authentic truth and love. Those may have been the people who gave us our first Bible, taught us those stories, or were just needed friends.

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Thinking back to when you first received Jesus, can you recall that joy, that passion you maybe once had, desperate to share the Gospel with others; or maybe when your kids accepted Jesus? Remember that indescribable place of gratitude to the Lord for working in their hearts — creating yet another spark in your heart for others to know that same joy of salvation. 

When did we lose that zeal? How quickly do we forget all that Jesus has done for us? May we open our eyes today to see all those souls without Jesus, desperate for love and freedom, longing to be seen and known. May we not neglect the children in our lives who have yet to experience the true meaning of Easter.

How Can We Redirect Our Attention?

I’ve often clung to the idea that our greatest ministries begin in our own homes, starting from within ourselves, developing within our families, growing outward to those in our community and nation who have yet to hear about Jesus. What Gospel message are we teaching our children when our attention is on the secular novelties surrounding these so-called Christian holidays rather than that of Christ Himself? How do we return God to the center of our celebrations?

  • Spending time with Jesus — in His Word, in prayer, and in faith-filled community

Scripture encourages us to “know” God. Countless passages remind us that knowing the Lord entails learning more of His commands and character, which leads to a growing desire for holiness and obedience within each of us. This relationship develops through intentional time spent with Jesus — both alone in quiet places and in community with other believers — becoming more intimately acquainted with His voice, His heart, and the countless ways He loves us.   

  • Leading our families — through quality time, prayer, and sound teaching

When we pray and read the Word of God to our children and with our spouses, we set ourselves up for baseline success within our home ministry. In focusing on the things of Heaven, we show our children where our priorities lie. And when our priority is on Jesus first, it isn’t on politics, sports, career success, money, material things, or reputation. Whether we like to admit it or not, our children bear witness to and are significantly influenced by the things we prioritize. Therefore, we must actively turn our attention, energy, and resources toward the things of Jesus — day to day, moment to moment. 

  • Sharing the Gospel with others — locally and abroad

As we prioritize spending time with Jesus and leading our families in faith, we will develop a greater love for others and a burden for sharing our faith with them. This is something we are all called to do, both at home and abroad. It is specifically important that we remain focused on the unreached (meaning those who have yet to hear the message of Jesus in any capacity), many in nations around the world that have never received a Bible in their own primary language. It is crucial that these precious souls, just like us, have access to the Word of God.

What if we each changed our Easter priorities this year? What if instead of time spent opening gift baskets from the Easter bunny, we actually shared the resurrection story with our children, explaining the incomparable significance of Jesus’s sacrifice on the cross? What if the tangible representation of this looked like our funds going toward discipling someone over coffee and buying Bibles for children in underprivileged nations rather than spending them on meaningless, transitory candy Easter eggs and gifts? Maybe our kids could even be encouraged to GIVE a gift of God’s Word at Easter, sharing any money they might receive to bless other children around the world with the true story of Easter — many of whom might be hearing it for the first time.

Now that would bring transformation — beyond Easter — into our homes, across our nation and around the world.

 

Bob Burckle is president of Eastern European Mission, which has been delivering God’s Word to the people of Eastern Europe since 1961, now reaching 37 countries in 27 languages. It has provided more than one million children’s and teen Bibles and Bible-based materials free of charge in the region in the last two years, including in public schools in several nations, and has a goal to deliver 570,000 more this year. Learn more at www.eem.org/bfk.

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