By Wendy Berghane, Hearts Alive Curriculum Specialist
Many places in the world celebrate Jesus’s resurrection in the spring, and this season is a beautiful reminder for you and your family that Easter is about new life. In his gracious design, God has given us the patterns of creation to help us teach our children about life, death, and resurrection.
Even young children can see that the flowers and trees are wilted and dead in the winter. Everything is dry and brown, with no flowers or fruit. This is what our hearts are like without Jesus. The Bible says that we are “dead in trespasses and sins” (Ephesians 2:1). What if winter never ended and the flowers never bloomed? This is what our lives would be like without Jesus. If your church celebrates a Good Friday service, this is an opportune time to talk with your children about the sadness and darkness of life without Jesus.
Without the Easter story, without the death and resurrection of Jesus, our hearts would have no hope for new life (1 Corinthians 15:13–22). Just like the plants cannot come to life without the light from the sun, we cannot come to life without the sacrifice of the Son. As spring brings new life to the earth, Easter reminds us that Jesus’s death brings new life! When we believe in Christ, God makes us a new creation. “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come!” (2 Corinthians 5:17).
So what does new life look like? How can we talk to kids about living the resurrected life?
Think about the trees that lose their leaves in winter. When Jesus died, God took away all our dead leaves, our sins. Because Jesus rose again, we can have new life from the inside out. When we believe that our heart is dead without Jesus, and when we tell God that we believe in him, he starts to fill our souls with life. New life with Jesus gives us new ways of thinking, new ways of serving, new ways of talking to our friends, and new ways of showing love to others. Through the power of the resurrection, God works to renew our hearts and our minds, drawing us closer to him every day.
God gives us his Word, his Spirit, our parents, and our pastors to teach us how to grow in Christ. When we read God’s Word and pray for God’s help, we can grow strong in Christ. We can be like the person in Psalm 1, “like a tree planted by streams of water that yields its fruit in its season, and its leaf does not wither. In all that he does, he prospers” (Psalm 1:3).
Ask your children how they can plant their lives by God’s “streams of water.” What time of the day can they read the Bible or have someone read Bible stories to them? How can Jesus help them forgive a friend who hurt their feelings? How can they remember to pray for their teachers? How can God help them practice self-control or patience with their brothers and sisters? How can they pay closer attention during Sunday school or the Sunday sermon? Living the resurrected life means opening yourself to following Jesus. Even young children can develop spiritual habits to transform their lives with God’s Word (Romans 12:2).
There are so many ways we can renew our minds and hearts to respond to God’s gift of the resurrection. Our mistakes don’t define us anymore. Instead, we pursue the God who loves us so much that he made the Easter story happen to save the world from darkness and give us new life with him.
Easter reminds us that we can be born again, bloom, grow, and give glory to God in our lives. So celebrate that gift this Easter and every day after. Rejoice as a family in the resurrection. Jesus died and rose again for YOU! What a beautiful journey the resurrected life brings to all ages!
Hearts Alive Sunday School and Children's Church provide liturgical congregations a highly-anticipated children’s curriculum that combines captivating content, lectionary alignment, and Gospel focus for children ages 3-12. For those seeking to engage children in a fun, age-appropriate application to the Revised Common Lectionary, Hearts Alive is a three-year course of study to give children a strong overview of the story of salvation and how it ties to a personal relationship with Jesus Christ. Hearts Alive supports and elevates liturgical traditions and the church calendar while using clear, contemporary learning techniques to present the Word of God. Learn more in our online community.
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