Whether your family fills Easter baskets or not, Easter offers parents a special opportunity to inspire your children toward resurrection living.
Easter is more than a bunny, more than new dress clothes, more than candy, and more than even attending a special service with the whole family.
Easter is about the resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ. Easter is about victory over death and sin. Easter is about the new kingdom and new life Christ makes available to us…right now.
To help the twins connect those dots, we try to downplay the commercial trappings that come with the season and try to focus on elements that inspire them to love Christ more deeply. We have fun decorating the house, doing fun activities that picture our new life through Christ, making fun and symbolic foods, and sharing special devotionals.
We don’t “do” the Easter bunny, but we do fill baskets with gifts meant to inspire their minds. For my boys, this task can be harder than it sounds considering that most books and activities produced during Easter are pastel or depict baby animals.
If you have the same problem, you might consider adding some Bible-based graphic novels to your son’s Easter basket this year.
Last year, we gave our boys the Action Bible – a visual timeline of about 200 Bible stories in chronological order.
The artistry is amazing and the editors do a pretty good job retaining the overall message and point of each Bible story – making sure they form one cohesive narrative of redemption.
Just a warning: as with most graphic novels, the artwork is very realistic and doesn’t shy away from the biblical story. So, Ezekiel’s dry bones take on more a zombie feel and the crucifixion of Christ can be a lot for young eyes. Those facts didn’t deter my boys, but if you have younger children, previewing the books is always a good idea.
The Pilgrim’s Progress
By chance, I stumbled across the graphic novel of John Bunyan’s literary classic, Pilgrim’s Progress, at a LifeWay store. The graphic version is split into two volumes and is abbreviated and retold so that younger readers can take in this treasure.
Not sure if the twins would like this book, I only bought the first volume and packed it for an upcoming trip to visit our other boy cousins. Between the six of them, this book was so well-read and fought over that we left for home missing several pages.
Each boy was mesmerized by the story of Christian and his loyal friend Faithful. The artwork is nothing short of amazing and emotional. The boys were so invested in the storyline, rooting for Christian to sidestep the various temptations along his journey, that I ordered the second volume while we were still on our trip and had it shipped to we were staying.
I still find them curled up on the couch or in bed with this book in their hands when they have a quiet moment.
If you have boys ages 6 and up, this gift will surely inspire them to faithful living in light of the resurrection.
A similar note of caution: the artwork is very realistic, so depictions of Satan could be scary for young readers. Similarly, some of the ladies are drawn in particularly sensuous ways. If that worries you, previewing a copy is wise.
The success of the Action Bible and Pilgrim’s Progress with the boys, sent me on a mission to find more material for the twins.
I discovered that Kingstone Media also produced their own comics line, with graphics similar to today’s comic books.
Each of these resources have opened the door to interesting conversations with the twins about faith, God, the afterlife and more. We’ve used them as quiet reading material as well as fun family read a-louds before bed.
How do you inspire your children with the message of Easter? I’d love to hear what you’ve used in your home, so share your ideas in the comments!
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