Easter 2016

Easter Worship Service
Sunday, March 27, 9:30 AM

Connecting to

Christ

2016 Easter WEB Banners 02-high

EASTER Worship Service

Sunday, March 27 | 9:30 AM | Worship Center
With heart-stirring music and gospel-focused preaching, we will celebrate the Risen Savior on Easter Sunday at 9:30 AM. Early and late Connection Groups (Sunday School) will be meeting as well!

We expect to have a full-house for the Easter Service, so the parking lot will be full as well. Please help us ease the congestion and provide convenient parking for guests by using one of the alternate parking locations.

  • Option 1: Park at Tinker Federal Credit Union and walk across the street to EFBC. Please use caution when crossing 33rd Street.
  • Option 2: Park at Mardel’s (corner of 33rd and Boulevard) and ride the EFBC church vans to and from EFBC. Vans will run from 8:00 AM to 12:30 PM.

The Meaning of Easter

Easter and children often mean new clothes, hiding eggs, candy, flowers, pageants, family visits, and that is to just name a few of the whirlwind of activities that take place each Easter season.

Parents, remember to focus on the fact that over 2000 years ago Jesus died on a cross and was raised on the third day to purchase a place in heaven for each of us. It is no wonder that many preschoolers and children do not have a sense of the awesome love God has for each of us. We give children confusing messages when we place too much emphasis on the hype and drama that comes with holiday celebrations. We have heard the phrase “clothes make a person”; remember the clothes that you may choose to purchase for a child does not make Easter. Easter is the celebration of the life, burial, and resurrection of our living Lord.

Celebrate the truth, not what the world is offering. Easter is a wonderful time to help children know that Jesus loves them. As adults we recall the events that led to Christ’s death, His burial, and wonder of His resurrection. A young child is limited in his understanding of these events, but he certainly can understand that Jesus is God’s son, and that Jesus loves him. So what does all this mean:

  • keep the secular events in perspective
  • focus on God’s love for us
  • celebrate
  • love others like Christ loves you

Love because God loved us enough to send His son. Make plans now to be a part and love others like Christ loves you.

Easter Resources Books to look for as a great resource for kids include:

  • The Story of Easter by Christopher Doyle
  • The Story of Easter by Aileen Fisher
  • Easter by Jan Pienkowski
  • Love One Another: The Last Days of Jesus

Board Books

  • The Story of Easter by Loirain Wells
  • The Story of Easter by Mary Ann Utt

Teaching Your Child about Easter

Written by Thomas Sanders
Packing our car for trips is a big task. Everyone has different priorities about what should go and what will fit. It all sits in the driveway, waiting to be loaded. However, after three children and countless road trips to Texas and New Mexico, I have learned one little secret. The big important stuff goes in first. I know this is because I have started with the small stuff, the unimportant stuff, and the incidental stuff, only to discover that we had no room left for the important things like clothing or medicine.

This same principle is true when you teach preschoolers and children important truths from the Bible. If teaching a child biblical truths are going to be important and ongoing, it must be put first. This can be incredibly difficult during seasonal celebrations. The community, school, church, merchants, and family line up outside the car with many good, seemingly important things to load up. The problem is that space is limited.

I feel this way especially near Easter and Christmas. Easter is the most significant Holy Day celebrated by Christians each year, but families and churches can be increasingly sidetracked by the secular marketing of this holiday. The temptation for families is either to leave the emphasis to their church via Sunday School teachers or to attempt to mix the secular theme with the sacred truth, therefore, confusing the child. The downside to either approach is that something important is left in the driveway. The Easter story stands alone and only requires the careful handling of the Bible by a loving parent or family member.

Put the first thing first in your family’s Easter celebration. Easter is first and foremost about Jesus and His ultimate expression of love for us. This means planning ways to involve each family member, regardless of age, in meaningful dialogue and activity related to Jesus. With younger preschoolers, it may mean telling the simple story of Jesus and the children and speaking of Jesus’ love for them (Mark 10:13-16).

With older preschoolers and children, it may mean telling the story of Jesus’ death on the cross and resurrection (Mark 15-16) in a way that instills hope and joy. Both of these stories help to lay the foundation for the understanding of Jesus’ love for people. The Easter story should be told in a way that creates trust and factual understanding. This story begins to encourage the child to grow from his understanding of Jesus as friend to Jesus as Savior. The telling of the story becomes a step in a process that hopefully will lead the child to the point of conversion and spiritual transformation at some point in life.

Helpful Hints for Your Easter Celebration

  • Tell the Easter story in a way that creates hope not fear or anxiety.
  • Tell the story factually from Scripture. Avoid giving non-biblical, adult details about the brutality of Jesus’ death.
  • Allow your child to create his own mental image of the story.
  • Emphasize the fact that Jesus is alive!
  • Load up the family car and include some secular activities if you like, but save the first and best place for the truth about Easter.

Tommy Sanders is director of Masters of Arts in Christian Education: Childhood Ministry, Gary Cook Graduate School of Leadership at Dallas Baptist University, Dallas, Texas. Thomas Sanders and his wife, Treva, are the parents of Katie, Jayne Claire, and Kyle