Best Easter Devotional for Kids: Why Easter?
I have been looking for a great family resource that prepares our hearts for the monumental event we tend to call Easter, although “Resurrection Sunday” is a more appropriate title for the Christian holiday. Anyway, I was excited when I first heard about Why Easter? by Barbara Reaoch. This absolutely wonderful devotional has four full weeks of devotional lessons to help families prepare their hearts for Easter. Although the book is marketed towards children, it ministered to me as an adult.
From the moment I looked at the first lesson in this book, I loved it. Instead of slowly getting to the “meat” of the message, this book jumped right in and laid out the basic Gospel message from the very beginning. As the book continued, the lessons were deep, rich, and not watered down; however, they still retained an age appropriateness that would appeal to children. Even the beautiful illustrations were ones that children of all ages could enjoy and were not cartoonish or too juvenile. Brilliantly done!
The format for each day is predictable and easy to follow. First, there is a Bible passage to look up and read. Secondly, there is a section for the parents to read to the children which expounds upon the verses read. Thirdly, a section called “Truth” provides a one sentence summary of the lesson. The summary is often deep and thought provoking, such as the “Truth” for the lesson for Matthew 27:57-61: “Jesus was buried according to God's plan.” (50) The fourth section is discussion questions related to the reading. Next is a Bible passage to memorize. The children are expected to memorize one Bible passage per week. Each day a different part of the passage is highlighted to help break up the task of memorization. Additionally, there is a verse or part of a verse that the family is supposed to discuss each day. The lesson then ends with a song and a discussion question related to the lyrics. (I liked the fact that the hymns could be found at the back of the book!) For week 3, day 18, for example, the discussion question related to the song “Up From the Grave He Arose” is “What is the difference between saying, 'Jesus is the Savior' and 'Jesus is my Savior'?”
I love that the devotional contains deep questions like that instead of the trite and often typical “surfacey” questions that simply have “Jesus” as the right answer...every single time. Personally, I want my kids to be able to think critically, express their beliefs fluently, and not just reiterate the “Christianese” they've been taught to say. I think this book will go a long way in helping us as a family reach that goal.
There was, unfortunately, one thing that I didn't like about this book. However, it is quite minor in the scope of things. Apparently, parents are supposed to discuss a different verse from the Bible memory passage each day. However, I wanted to see some more information on how to discuss that verse rather than a statement simply telling the parents to discuss it. Sometimes, I need a little help...
Overall, this is a beautifully written resource that I plan to have my family use year after year. This shall easily become a classic, timeless piece within our home...
Publisher's Book Description:
Easter is a celebration of the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ. But how many children know why Jesus died and came to life again? This illustrated devotional contains 28 lessons—one for each day of the four weeks leading up to Easter—in a short, focused format designed to help parents show the Christ of Easter to their children.
Go over here for my review of Why Christmas? by Barbara Reaoch.
*Please note that I received this book for free from Cross Focused Reviews and Shepherd Press in exchange for an unbiased review...