Lambs are just as cute as bunnies and chicks!
Last year we “rented” baby chicks for 2 weeks around Easter and within the first few days my kids were in love with them. Needless to say, there were tears when we had to bring them back to the farm. So what if there was a rent-a-lamb program? I think I would do it…just once…for the experience of it. Within days of that lamb being in our home, we would fall in love with it, name it, and watch its cuteness like a new family member. But now, let’s not just send it back to it’s farm, let’s roast it and eat it. How did the Israelite moms and dads work their children through that?!? 4 days the lamb was in the home! I know the tears my kids would have had. Children feel loss keenly. They mourn and will not be consoled because they love much. This is probably similar to how the followers of Jesus felt at the foot of the cross. They loved much and now he’s gone.
“Why did He have to die?”
Well, why did the lamb have to be killed for each house
on the night of that last plague in Egypt?
If the lamb didn’t die, there would be no blood for the door. And if there was no blood on the door, death would not pass over the house, but enter in. The blood of the lamb rescued them from death and freed them from slavery. This first Passover event was turned into a yearly feast to remember this great rescue from Egypt. The feast itself was a story told by the parents over and over – the story of a miraculous salvation by God.
Those living after Jesus’ death realized that the Passover came to life again. Jesus, the Lamb of God, was slain to rescue his people from the slavery of sin. Now, the feast takes on two meanings.
We are not required to observe this feast as the Israelites were and as Jesus was the night he was betrayed. But consider this feast as an opportunity to use all the senses to tell a story that leads to the greatest story!
We have done a simple Passover meal with our kids for years. It began as a meal on the floor with fish sticks, apples, and a rice crispy lamb. It’s grown a little each year with the making of unleavened bread and pieces of the traditional Passover seder meal. I will be honest, though, I have only attended a Passover Seder (in Israel) once when I was a teenager and I remember very little. I would love to attend another now that I understand more of the significance. So, my goal in this meal is not to teach my kids the exact ritual of the Seder but to use some of it’s symbols and foods to tell a story they will never forget. I will share with you the resources I used to create our own “script” for Passover. It’s still in process. Simple and meaningful is my goal. Ann Voskamp has a simplified Passover script that we modified (and simplified some more). We also referred to this article on Gatherandgrow.co called How to share a family Passover meal. After we finish modifying this year, maybe I can share the script next year for those that are interested.
This is generally how the day went. The kids listened to the whole story of the exodus on audio Bible. Then we printed off doors that they painted red on the frame for the blood. My 8 year old wanted to make the rice crispy lamb while I worked with cubing the real lamb meat to roast on the grill (my first time ever making lamb!) Next we pretended that we were the Israelites and made our bread dough quickly into flat cakes without yeast and roasted it in the oven…very rustic looking bread here with finger holes and awesome shapes. The unleavened bread has symbolism for the Passover feast as well as salt water, apple sauce, horseradish, lamb and parsley. Other foods that may have been common in Jesus’ time are also put out like figs, dates, almonds, fruits, and fish. Juice is poured. Then all is set on a blanket (and a legless folding table) on the floor. The kids ask 4 questions about the food and we taste, thinking about the meaning and smiling because it’s so different than the normal meal. It’s serious, yet fun, and the kids feel both keenly. The focus of this meal is the lamb, as it should be. There is so much meaning tied to the lamb.
Reach for the Lamb.
Remember the Lamb this Easter.