Easter Expectations

In the photo to the left, you see our children, Rebekah, Joseph, and Jonathan smiling. They are smiling, because they believe that the cookies in front of them are going to be eaten in a few minutes after they are placed into the oven. But, you see, these are special cookies, Resurrection Cookies.

This year, Kelly felt it important that we do something more tangible to celebrate Easter with the kids, so using a recipe from the ladies of Calvary Christian A/G in Springfield, MO we introduced Resurrection Cookies to them. These cookies are made in such a way as to give children visual, hands on representations of the passion, death, and resurrection of Christ. Reading Bible verses to accompany each step in the process, we made cookies, but we also reflected on the reasons why Jesus had to die, and the manner in which he suffered for us. Crushing almonds signified the beating that Jesus took on the cross. Vinegar represented the gall that Jesus was offered, and so on until the process was completed.

In all I think the part most significant in the process was the sadness of closing the cookies in the oven for the night and going to bed. As we taped the oven shut, sealing the “tomb”, the children complained. They wanted to have a taste of the cookies before bed, but we wouldn’t relent. Besides there being raw eggs in the mixture, we felt that it was important for our children to experience in a small way, the disappointment that the disciples felt as the tomb of Jesus was sealed shut, as all of their hopes and expectations of something great were dashed. Our three saw their treats being taken away from them, the disciples, their very lives.

The joy and the excitement of Easter morning couldn’t have been more real then as the seal of death was broken and the tomb was empty. Jesus was alive and hope was reborn. Our children weren’t expecting to go to bed in disappointment, but they will wake up tomorrow to perhaps an unexpected sweetness. In the same way, Jesus didn’t fulfill the earthly expectations of his band of followers, but the new life that his disciples tasted on that Sunday morning could not have been more sweet.

The wonderful thing is that all of us get to share in the benefits of the finished work of the death and resurrection of Christ, and the flavor that forgiveness can bring to life cannot be compared!

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