EDITOR’S NOTE: This column features lessons and sermons for children from Annette Dammer’s book “Ready, Set, Go!”
The point of all
Jesus lives! And loves us! That is something to celebrate!
Enough empty plastic Easter eggs for each child (arranged in a basket)
A basketful of candy, or treats to hand around
Arrange the plastic eggs in a basket. Dress them up so the kids crave the eggs.
Hide the candy or treats under the eggs, or in another basket behind where you’ll stand to teach. Do this before the kids can see you do it.
Verses to pray on
John 20:15 — “Woman, why are you weeping? Whom are you seeking?”
John 20:19 — “Peace be with you.”
John 20:21 — “So Jesus said to them again, ‘Peace to you! As the Father has sent Me, I also send you.’”
Ready, set, go!
The big day — Easter — is finally here! Christ is risen! Let’s have a cheer. “Jesus lives today! Hip, hip, hooray! Jesus lives today! Hip, hip, hooray!” (Add arm movement. Walk them through it, motion to the parents to join in.) Jesus lives today! Hip, hip, hooray! (Repeat a couple of times.)
Wow! Jesus lives. And lives. And lives. But when He died, His friends, His mom, those who loved Him, were very, very sad. And another follower “buried” Him — very dead indeed — in a tomb with a large stone blocking the doorway and guarded by soldiers. And his friends cried. They did not know Jesus would live again.
But they were in for a surprise, weren’t they?
Speaking of surprises, would you like a prize egg? (Pass them out.) Open your eggs on three. One, two, three! Do you like my gift? (Pause.) What do you mean they’re empty? Let me see. (Pause, then smile.) I know they’re empty. Were you surprised?
Can you imagine how Mary Magdalene, a friend of Jesus, felt when she went to his tomb, found the huge boulder moved away from the opening, and saw that the tomb was empty? She certainly was not expecting that! And she wasn’t happy about it. She actually began to cry. She thought that someone had stolen Jesus’ body.
But Jesus was right behind her. (Pass out the “real” treats — from behind you, if possible.) It was a glorious surprise for all those who loved Jesus. It was such a surprise that some people today don’t even believe it! (Shake your head in disbelief.)
But you and I believe what God did. And we’re all blessed by Jesus’ life. So Easter is a day to rejoice isn’t it?
Jesus lives! Jesus lives! We will have many more surprises — and even questions — as we move along life’s road. But we need to remember that Jesus is alive and the treat — Heaven — is guaranteed for those who believe.
And there’s more: love and peace and the company and comfort of the Holy Spirit.
Let’s cheer one more time. Parents, help us out (motion to the pews.) “Jesus lives today! Hip, hip, hooray! Jesus lives today! Hip, hip, hooray!”
Let’s pray. (Ask a child to pray, or use the following.) Father, thank You because the gift You gave was enormous, and we are sooooo grateful. Thank you Father God, and thank you Jesus, for loving us so very, very much. What a gift! Amen.
Annette Dammer is a columnist, teacher, former children’s minister and author of the book “Ready, Set, Go! A Year of Object Lessons.” This column includes lessons from her book. The e-book is available for free at www.smashwords.com/books/view/1045891. You may reach her at email@example.com.