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Remember Easter's meaning

By Staff
Michelle Blaylock, Mom's Corner
I can hardly believe Easter is just a few days away.
As I began my article this week, I started to wonder where on earth did the name Easter come from and how it is tied into the death and resurrection of my Savior, Jesus Christ?
I couldn't think of a passage in the Bible where Easter was used. So just exactly what did it mean? Well, it comes from "Eastre," which was the name of some pagan goddess of offspring and spring
It seems that second century Christian missionaries took over the holiday that the pagans used to celebrate Eastre since it was about the same time the Christians celebrated the resurrection of Christ.
The general idea was for Christians to be able to celebrate at the same time as the pagans and to gradually convert more pagans over to Christianity. Over time, the spelling was changed to Easter and became the holiday we now know.
OK, so where does the Easter Bunny come into this? You've probably guessed it by now.
The bunny was the symbol for Eastre the pagan goddess. Easter eggs also have a pagan origin; they both represent fertility. Go figure.
Now that you've had your history lesson, wonder where I'm going with this? I think it's important for us to imprint on our children what Easter means for us as Christians.
I believe this can be done without having to give up Easter eggs, Easter baskets, and other traditional stuff. After all, our Heavenly Father created the bunnies, chicks, and eggs. It's how we choose to use them that makes them bad.
Let me share some of my ideas.
We don't have huge Easter baskets at our home. We do have baskets, but they are not the focus of our day. The focus of our day is worship. Easter baskets can have items that turn a child's attention back to Christ. Some examples would be a small chain with a cross on it, a book about the true meaning of Easter, an Easter coloring book depicting the Christian Easter, plastic eggs with simple Easter scriptures or items that depict the story of Easter (see http://msssbible.com/miscellaneous/easter.htm for ideas).
Another way to use eggs is to talk about how sin stains us as we dye them. And just like we can't remove the dye from the egg, we can't remove the sin from our hearts, only Jesus can do that.
Use a crayon to write Easter messages on them (Jesus Saves, Born Again, He Is Risen, etc.). Eggs also can represent the new life the tomb holds for everyone.
There are so many ideas for Easter I can't possibly share all of them with you. I've found many different internet sites that are terrific; two of them are http://www.annieshomepage.com/holiday.html and http://peggiesplace.gospelcom.net/easter1.htm. This last one, "Peggie's Place," has some wonderful devotionals, too.
I think one of the most important aspects of any holiday is spending time with your children and creating memories with them.
There is a wonderful book written by Gloria Gaither and Shirley Dobson called "Let's Make a Memory." I love this book. It has simple ideas that have lasting impressions like the Easter message eggs I mentioned above.
Oh, by the way, do not put a hardboiled egg in the microwave. When I was about 13 or so my daddy suggested I put one of the eggs in the microwave to try and shrink the shrink wrap instead of using boiling water like you're supposed to. (He knew what would happen. I didn't, but he did!) It was like a miniature grenade exploding! It took me over an hour to get all the egg and shell out of my mom's microwave! She was not happy. I hope you have a blessed Easter. If you have a tip, question, or suggestion for Mom's Corner, please send it to: Mom's Corner; P.O. Box 1496; Hartselle, AL 35640.
or e-mail: moms-corner@juno.com.

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