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Saturday, April 07, 2007

The Meaning of Easter

I used to help prepare kids in our church for their confirmation. It was a joy to do. We had a lesson curriculum but I had fun trying to prepare fun things for them to do to learn the content of the lessons.

I made a game of Jeopardy on my laptop where I would give the answer and they had to think of what the question was. When I showed the slide with the answer there was a round of applause sound bite that would play. The kids seemed to enjoy that game because they asked for it the following week.

Sometimes though I would wonder if they were only doing their confirmation under duress, and they really didn't buy into the whole thing. Some would sit in my class with their arms crossed and I really had my doubts.

I only know of one little lamb that I lost along the way for sure, because I spoke to his mom about him. She was at her wits end and couldn't get him even to come to church.

There was one boy who was very quiet but polite and he sat at the back of the room. I didn't think he was particularly engaged but in retrospect I think he was just the observing kind.

After his confirmation he sent me an email and said that he really appreciated my confirmation classes and what I taught them. He said that if it wasn't for me he wouldn't be happy about doing his confirmation.

Well it just warmed my heart to hear that, especially when it was hard to get a read out of him in class, even though I did direct questions specifically to him. I wish I still had that email. It would do me good to read it again.

Anyways, I digress, the real intention of this post was to talk about a little lesson I gave them when I asked them the following question:

Which is the most important holiday in the Christian faith?
Then I would give them the following answers to choose from and I would count the number of kids who raised their hand for each answer (giving them time to think about it more while I did this)

  • Christmas
  • Shrove Tuesday
  • Ash Wednesday
  • Palm or Passion Sunday
  • Holy Thursday
  • Good Friday
  • Easter
Of course many chose Christmas and others chose Good Friday and some chose Shrove Tuesday thinking it was a trick question.

Then I asked them, "Why do we remember Jesus's birthday?" (Those that picked Christmas started getting all smug thinking they indeed had the right and obvious answer)

Then I asked them, "Would we even remember his birthday if he didn't die for our sins?" So now the people who picked Good Friday are thinking the picked the right answer.

Then I asked them, "What is so miraculous about his death?"

Then I would get the answer, excitedly "Because he rose from the dead!" BINGO!

That's when the ones who picked EASTER had their choice affirmed and they realized how now all that made sense.

Except some years I would get one smart one who still tried to argue with me that if he wasn't born he couldn't rise from the dead!!! LOL!

Barbara H. has a great Thursday Thirteen up this week quoting scholars about Jesus' resurrection and also listing the people who saw Jesus after he was resurrected.

I think Paul's (formerly Saul) accounts are most compelling since he was an absolute unbeliever of Jesus until he appeared to him.

It's all very hard to fathom. Sometimes the logical part of me looks at it all and says that I and all the believers must be real fruit cakes. I take comfort in knowing that some day I will come to know and understand the full story in the glory of the kingdom of God.

On bad days, that's good enough for me, on good days, it's completely awesome.

Happy EASTER Everyone!

Saturday Photo Hunt is here at ICL is at Home


Barbara H. said...

Great way to teach the lesson!

I agree about Saul/Paul. I can just imagine what those early believers felt when they first heard that this persecutor had become a believer!

Happy Easter!

Hootin'Anni said...

What a wonderful lesson!! I really enjoyed reading about it and remembering my confirmation.

I'm here to wish you a very joyous Easter.

Also, to answer you question about the header vs. blogroll...it's Woman to Woman

Gattina said...

I think it's very nice that you could teach them at least a little bit, I am not religious at all and I have to say I am not the only one. But this is a private opinion and everybody should do what he thinks is right.
You almost brake my screen with your jumping bunny ! Pookie saw it and wanted to catch it, lol !

Irish Church Lady :) said...

Barbara H ~ so true, I often wonder that myself! Thanks for forming part of my post today! Happy Easter to you!

Thanks Hootin' Anni! ~ I don't follow that Woman to Woman blog but thanks for the heads up. A wonderful Easter to you also!

Gattina ~ I agree, it's very much a personal choice. You have to believe in what is right for you because who knows in the end. I am only happy to share with those who want to know more or my experiences. LOL about Pookie! He was too cute to resist when I saw him!

Melli said...

Ain't it the TRUTH? AMEN!

Irish Church Lady :) said...

Melli ~ yuppers, sistah!

Suzanne R said...

This is a lovely post. When I hear so much on the news about people trying to cast doubt on the resurrection, it can be easy to doubt it, myself. I don't want to get by on borrowed faith but I feel stronger in my beliefs from reading your post and those of other bloggers who are believers as well.

Kathy said...

Hello! I haven't visited in awhile, so I thot I'd pop in and see what you are writing about.
I am a teacher also, middle schoolers on Wednesday evenings, and I, too, sometimes wonder if the kids are comprehending ~ and remembering ~ what I'm trying to teach concerning Biblical truths. Just not much response. It's hard to gauge if it's changing their lives, or impacting the daily decisions they make. We'll probably never know til we get to heaven!
Keep up the good work! "Be ye steadfast, unmovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, forasmuch as you know that your labor is NOT IN VAIN in the Lord." I Cor. 15:58

Irish Church Lady :) said...

Suzanne ~ You are right, even within my own family sometimes I feel like I'm the only one trying to keep my faith. Actually my faith is strong, I am just terribly weak and such a sinner. Thank you for your kind comment. It's nice to know that a few small words do mean something to others.

Kathy ~ thanks for visiting. Are you a trained teacher or is this just volunteer work that you do? Good for you either way! I was just wondering because sometimes I wondered by not having any formal training if I was at a disadvantage. I spoke from the heart though and I think it helped.

And thank you for quoting that wonderful scripture. :-)

chase said...

I think you are a great teacher. I am not religious at all but for me Easter is about God who has risen from the dead and cleanse us from all our sins. Anyway, hope you have a lovely Easter!

mist1 said...

I'm having a hard time with Easter this year. Thanks for this post.

Irish Church Lady :) said...

Chase ~ *blushes* Thank you, I tried my best. You are spot on Mr. about the meaning of Easter. How can we not be in awe of that?

Mist1 ~ Honey, you are so welcome. Sometimes I have a hard time about why we eat his body and drink his blood.