Easter is that time of year when chocolate bunnies, jellybeans and technicolored eggs abound. And for a brief moment, pushing, shoving and “give me!” abound as well. Doesn’t it seem odd that the holiday that highlights the greatest sacrifice of all would be celebrated with a frenzy of self-interest? Jesus gave up everything, yet for about 5 minutes of fun, we seek to gain as much as possible. Maybe it’s time for a different kind of Easter egg hunt.
Here’s an alternative you and your family may want to try this year: an Easter Egg Hunt and Give.
Here’s how it works:
An Easter Egg Hunt for Christian Families
- Purchase fillable plastic eggs. Make sure you have enough for each child participating to end up with the same number and same distribution of each color of egg.
- Decide on your “filling.” You can pick small pieces of candy, coins or even jokes written on slips of paper.
- Set the stage. Hide the eggs around your yard (or home). Give each child a basket or a plastic bag for collecting their eggs.
- Read John 15:13. Ask your children what they think it means in light of Easter Sunday. Then talk about the sacrifice that Jesus made for us.
- Talk about giving and receiving. Ask your children about the last time they gave someone a present. How did they feel? Why does it feel good to give something to someone?
- Announce the objective of this Easter Egg hunt. Your children’s goal is to make sure that, by the end of the hunt, every basket has the same composition of eggs: two of each color, 4 blue/4 pink/4 yellow, or whatever you decide. It is the children’s job to make sure that all baskets end up the same.
- Explain how it works. Every time a hidden egg is found, the goal is to give it away, not keep it. However, you can’t just give it to anyone. You have to find someone who is in need of that particular color. If you find a yellow and the goal is no more than two of each color and you find someone who has both yellows already, you will need to hunt for someone else who still needs that color. You can’t search for a new egg until the one you have is given away with a cheery, “Happy Easter!”
- Gather at the end. While this type of hunt ends up “fair” for everyone, we can talk about the fact that what Jesus experienced wasn’t fair. If He were playing, His basket would have been empty at the end. He gave everything up for us. You can then read and discuss the following passage:
“Each of you should look not only to your own interests, but also to the interests of others. Your attitude should be the same as that of Christ Jesus: Who, being in very nature God, did not consider equality with God something to be grasped, but made himself nothing, taking the very nature of a servant, being made in human likeness. And being found in appearance as a man, he humbled himself and became obedient to death— even death on a cross! Therefore God exalted him to the highest place and gave him the name that is above every name, that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.” Philippians 2:4-11
Easter is a fun and exciting time for children. Let’s make sure that the real reason we celebrate doesn’t get hidden under a layer of fake grass and fuzzy chicks. He is risen. He is risen indeed!