Easter - Not Just Another Story
In this week's blog, WCCS School Chaplain, Jake Tassy, shares some thoughts on some important conversations to have with your families as we approach Easter.
“So when Pilate saw that he was gaining nothing, but rather that a riot was beginning, he took water and washed his hands before the crowd, saying, ‘I am innocent of this man’s blood; see to it yourselves.’ And all the people answered, ‘His blood be on us and on our children!’ Then he released for them Barabbas, and having scourged Jesus, delivered him to be crucified.” Matthew 27:24-26
Who doesn't love a good story? Four different Gospels verify the angles of this particular story. Historians can't disprove it happened. Eye witnesses are sources to it. It is the greatest story ever.
Why? Because it's not just a story, it is what brings about the truest Hope for us all. The culmination of Old Testament verified. The day that changed everything.
So as parents, why don't we share more about it? Maybe we're good with the children's story version? Maybe we don't like studying it deeper, or it’s a little messy to talk about with our young kids? Maybe the baskets filled with chocolate bunnies, peeps, jelly beans, and colored hard boiled eggs are enough to bring in the spring. Perhaps the ritual of going to church and dressing your family in their Easter best is enough to show you're interested in this holiday season.
Really!? Jesus made a commitment to do something no one else could do. That is cause to tell our children what really went down and why they have such great hope. To make sure they understand. Maybe if we really took to heart what Jesus has done for His family, we'd make sure we didn't forget it in ours.
Pilate was the leader in a pinch. If he doesn't succumb in some way to those Jewish leaders, it will seem like he doesn't have control over his section of the Roman kingdom. So he symbolically washes his hand of the situation because he knows Jesus is innocent. Law stated he could release a prisoner for "a prisoner". The crowd wouldn't budge and asked to release the rebel Barabbas ... whose name meant "son of Abba". That's not the rock group either.
Then the crowd had the audacity to make the ironic statement, "Let His blood be on us and on our children!" I'm sure it was with anger and gnashing of teeth. But Wait? Isn't that what Jesus came to do? Even in that terrible moment and mindset, Jesus still went through with His commitment to take the awful punishment for our sins and cover us with his blood.
When we get this, Easter will never look the same. Below are a few suggestions for some conversations to have with your children to help them “connect the dots” as we approach Easter.
In the week leading up to Easter, read the Gospel accounts of the "before & after" of the Passion. Make connections with your children on what events happen when. Take your time and give them a chance to ask questions.
Talk about humility, finishing well, last words, obedience, fear, death, betrayal, loneliness, heaven, friendship, dealing with hurt, sacrifice, joy, motivation, and commitment as they all relate to the Easter story.
Talk specifically about why the resurrection matters – how it verifies that he is God, proves his power over death, and gives us hope in eternal life of our own.
Dig deep in the Word with your family and discover something different, something that touches your heart in a new way each year. Allow it to change how you live this life until He comes again.
Friends, even when we reject what Jesus has for us, He still stays committed to redeem and reconcile all things to Himself. THAT'S WHY WE CELEBRATE (Starburst jelly beans and all)! Even when we don't comprehend how he is working in our daily grind, He will be coming back for His chosen ones. Easter celebrations are just a practice for what's to come! Parents, we are praying for you and your families this Easter season as you reflect on all our Savior has done for us.
Soli Deo Gloria... TO GOD ALONE BE THE GLORY!