Friday, March 21, 2008

What Makes this Friday "Good"?

Today is "Good Friday," the day we commemorate the death of Jesus Christ. What "good" is there in a day where God-in-flesh was murdered so wrongfully? The good, no the AMAZINGLY GREAT, is that His death was not the end of the story! As I remember the ultimate sacrifice of a Father who willingly allowed the torturous death of His only biological Son to pray the price of my eternal adoption, I am humbled and awed all over again. How incredible that He offers the forgiveness of my sins and the assurance of Heaven for simply believing that He is who He claims to be, that He led a sinless life, died in my place, and overcame death by resurrection. Forgiveness and peace are mine for the asking, His gifts freely offered!

While nothing in contrast with the Greatest Gift, I have a couple special little things I would like to give to you today as well. First, I would love to share with you an idea that has become a special part of our family's Easter tradition. Neither of these alternatives are original with me, but they have been so widely duplicated that I am unable to site any original sources. And my second gift is the special discount code for Affordable Mineral Makeup that you will find at the end of this post. :)

Here's a great activity for Sunday morning, called Resurrection Rolls. Thaw 1 package frozen roll dough (can use canned crescent roll dough if you prefer) and press each roll into flat circles. Place one full-sized marshmallow into the center of each roll and pinch the dough around it. Roll the marshmallow-filled rolls into round balls then dip in melted butter. Sprinkle with cinnamon sugar and let rise until doubled. Bake at 350 degrees until golden brown. Cut one open - it's empty like Jesus' tomb!

A similar idea, called Easter Story Cookies, can be done Saturday night:
1 cup whole pecans (or substitute chocolate chips or a chocolate bar)
1 teaspoon vinegar
3 egg whites
pinch salt
1 cup sugar
zipper baggie
wooden spoon or a wooden meat hammer
duct tape or packing tape

Preheat oven to 300*F.

Place pecans (or chocolate) in zipper baggie and let children beat them with the wooden spoon or hammer to break them into small pieces.

Explain that after Jesus was arrested he was beaten by the Roman soldiers. Read John 19:1-3.

Let each child smell the vinegar. Put 1 teaspoon of vinegar into the mixing bowl.

Explain that when Jesus was thirsty on the cross he was given vinegar to drink. Read John 19:28-30.

Add egg whites to the vinegar. Eggs represent life.

Explain that Jesus gave his life to give us life. Read John 10:10-11.

Sprinkle a little salt into each child's hand. Let them taste. Then put your pinch of salt in the bowl.

Explain that this represents the salty tears shed by Jesus’ followers, and the bitterness of our own sin. Read Luke 23:27

So far, the ingredients are not very appetizing! Add 1 cup sugar to the bowl.

Explain that the sweetest part of the story is that Jesus died because he loves us. He wants us to know and belong to him. Read Psalm 34:8 and John 3:16.

Beat with a mixer on high speed for 10 to 15 minutes until stiff peaks form.

Explain that the color white represents the purity in God's eyes of those whose sins have been cleansed by Jesus. Read Isaiah 1:18 and John 3:1-3.

Fold in broken nuts. Drop by teaspoons onto wax paper covered cookie sheets.

Explain that each mound represents the rocky tomb where Jesus’ body was laid. Read Matthew 27:57-60.

Put the cookie sheet in the oven, close the door and turn the oven OFF. Give each child a piece of tape to seal the oven door.

Explain that Jesus' tomb was sealed. Read Matthew 27:65-66.

Leave the kitchen. If you've been making these cookies just before bedtime, GO TO BED!

Acknowledge that the kids are probably sad that they've worked hard to make these cookies, and now have to leave them in the oven overnight. Explain that Jesus' followers were in sad when Jesus died and the tomb was sealed. Read John 16:20 and 22.

On Easter morning, open the oven and give everyone a cookie. Ask the kids to notice the cracked surface. Have them bite into the cookies. The cookies are hollow!

Explain that on the first Easter morning, Jesus' followers were amazed to find the tomb open and empty. Read Matthew 28:1-9.



From now until midnight EST on Easter Sunday (3/23/08) take 11% (yes 11, as in the number of disciples after Judas betrayed Jesus) off your entire Affordable Mineral Makeup order from by putting the word "easter" in the coupon section at check out. :)

1 comment:

Sue~Health Nut Wannabe said...

Jenni, I love this post. God loves us so much and wants us to be with him so he paid this very high price so that we can. Good Friday was the price, and Easter Sunday was the real gift to us.