Crowded tightly around an overflowing table is the classic signal that this moment in time is special. On any normal night, you eat dinner with your immediate family. But to signify the importance and celebration of a noteworthy event, friends and families gather together, greeting one another with hugs and smiles and how-are-yous as each one arrives. Then at the pre-planned hour the collected group assembles around a table. Squeezing in tightly, willingly sacrificing personal space so everyone has a place, we share a meal together and in doing so mirror the practice of Jesus fellowshipping with those He loved.
So this Easter, plan to gather with your extended family, your friends, or members of your church family. This is the pinnacle event of our faith! The resurrection of Jesus is worthy of a grand commemorative celebration. Plan a get together. Think of what you do at Christmastime: you dot your calendar with work and school parties, cookie exchanges, neighborhood caroling, and four different family gatherings.
Take the initiative to create celebrations this Easter season, too. Declare God’s faithfulness to your family through the cross. And give thanks. Give praise. Give applause. Give merriment to the finished work of Jesus’ sacrifice.
Right now, today, you have five weeks left to plan for Easter. Here are a few ideas to help your people become #EasterPeople.
- Organize a neighborhood egg hunt, using Resurrection Eggs. FamilyLife even offers a printable party-planning packet to make it easy. Get your church and community involved with some advance preparation.
- Invite your friends over for a DIY craft night to make these Easter candles. Use them as décor on your kitchen or dining room table. We have three different sets for you to choose from. Set 1 includes four transfer designs to be applied with heat to four pillar candles and intended to be used on Easter Sunday only. Set 2 and 3 are similar designs to be used one each day for Holy Week with our free downloadable Holy Week Advent cards. The difference is set 2 are also candle transfers while set 3 are paper candle wraps to be cut and wrapped around the candle and tied with twine. Both of these 2 sets of seven are to also be used all together on your Easter Sunday table.
- Candles signal to everyone who gathers, this is a special day or a special event so plan ahead and make your Easter candles. And go ahead and use them on your table or fireplace mantle but don’t light them until it’s time. Waiting builds anticipation for the big day, Jesus’ Resurrection.
- Send an Easter care package. If there’s someone you’d love to spend Easter with but distance keeps you apart, drop a meaningful gift in the mail to them. If they’ll be hosting the meal, send the Easter placemats and napkins. Or send the set of 8 Oh,Taste and See cards for someone single or alone to read as personal devotions.
It’s time to start planning some Easter fun. People are always up for a reason to get together. Give them the best reason to gather and celebrate.
As you spend many loving hours this month preparing for your Easter gathering, remember that Jesus said, “I go to prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive (or gather) you to Myself…” (John 14:3). When we gather in His name we are enacting a future event more wonderful than the best Easter feast imaginable. Remembering His gathering to come will make this year’s family time more sacred and meaningful.