Today is Easter, 2015. It is without question the holiest day in the Christian calendar. And it’s always interesting to see what our daughter, Kristin, will come up with for the kids that attend church at Zionsville Presbyterian Church, where she is on staff – writing curriculum and working with the younger children. She has been on staff a number of years now and it never fails to amaze us seeing what creative ideas she comes up with. She loves her job and is truly a teacher at heart. In fact, Kristin taught 5th grade for a number of years in the Carmel Clay school system before she went on staff at the church.
I am sure that you already get the idea that Kristin loves her job. But this week-end, Janet and I were able to play a small role in helping her get ready for this most holy day on the calendar. That’s because Kristin found a craft idea to make jars full of jellybeans with each color representing some aspect of our relationship with God. Black is for the sin that we have, red is for the blood of Jesus, green for the growth in our faith, white for the grace we receive and the other colors standing for other aspects of our life with Jesus. She couldn’t find all the colors that she needed so Janet and I went on went on a mission to buy all the different colors of jellybeans and a little “Easter grass” to put in each jar. When I was a child, we never had anything cool projects like this that we were able to do on Easter Sunday in our classrooms, but after working on this yesterday, I don’t think I will ever look at a jellybean the same way again…
As I look back on it, I have to say that I really didn’t learn that much in church school back when I was growing up. As I recall, I usually had men Sunday school teachers and they were more interested in talking about Sunday afternoon football than they were in teaching us about God’s word. That changed when we attended the high school youth groups, but I sure wish that I had teachers like Kristin when I was growing up. I think that I would have had a much stronger, and earlier, interest in the Scripture than the way things turned out.
Now the jellybeans would have been enough, but then Kristin discovered another project that she just had to try. We ran into her while shopping yesterday and she told us all about it – she called them resurrection rolls. I have never heard of them before but I am sure that the kids were wide-eyed when Kristin taught them about these special rolls. Apparently, they are made like regular rolls that you bake in the oven, but when you are making them, you put a marshmallow in the middle – after they rise and are finished cooking, you pull them apart and the marshmallow is gone – empty. The marshmallow represents Jesus in the tomb and although the space for the marshmallow is still there, the “tomb” is empty. I assume the marshmallow is absorbed into the dough as it is cooking, and I haven’t seen this for myself, but Kristin says that it is incredibly cool to witness.
I realize that I am a little prejudiced here, but Kristin has a really special gift for teaching the word of God to her small charges. And when she needs extra help, parents flock to assist her. It is a great ministry that she has with those families and their children.
The verse tonight represents the Easter story in all its glory. We are told in Luke 24:1-8, “On the first day of the week, very early in the morning, the women took the spices they had prepared and went to the tomb. They found the stone rolled away from the tomb, but when they entered, they did not find the body of the Lord Jesus. While they were wondering about this, suddenly two men in clothes that gleamed like lightning stood beside them. In their fright the women bowed down with their faces to the ground, but the men said to them, “Why do you look for the living among the dead? He is not here; he has risen! Remember how he told you, while he was still with you in Galilee: ‘The Son of Man must be delivered into the hands of sinful men, be crucified and on the third day be raised again.’” Then they remembered his words.”
My encouragement this Easter Sunday is that the Lord is Risen and He promises eternal life to all who accept the free gift of eternal life. My prayer is that you will give thanks for the sacrifice that Jesus suffered for all of us – and for His Father, who devised the grand plan of how we could be reunited with Jesus for all time. Have a great day in the Lord, grace and peace…