"It is well to remember that the entire population of the universe, with one trifling exception, is composed of others." A.Holmes

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Sorrow Becomes Joy

Our son's 4 daughters were able to travel to this side of the mountains for a glorious week with us and their 4 cousins ( our daughter & her husbands' children) who live close-by. As a grandma who loves to share her faith with them how could I resist spending every day with all 8 of our grandchildren? I decided to have a week long Vacation Bible School here, complete with fun crafts and of course leaving time for the 8 cousins to play together. Our Bible lessons centered on Jesus' triumphal entry on a donkey colt into Jerusalem, His last supper, His betrayal, crucifixion, and resurrection. On the day of the Butterfly Tea party ( previous post ) we watched an animated DVD of this Bible story after we had lunch. Above is a picture of one of our sweet granddaughters' reaction to the abuse Jesus suffered just before His crucifixion.
All 8 of the children ( and we adults too) became very quiet at the animated scenes of His crucifixion , some of the children hid their faces...
...but happiness and relief as we remembered He did not stay in the tomb. He's alive !
I taught Sunday School for many years and over those years I noticed the story of Jesus' death began to disappear from the Sunday School curriculum, instead focusing almost exclusively on His resurrection and the delights of spring time . The crucifixion was greatly minimized and sanitized so as to hold little or no importance at all. One curriculum went so far as to explain that we should not disturb the children with such sadness. I ask you, what then is the purpose or point of our faith ? Where is the hope,miracle, and joy of resurrection if there is no death? (Please know I am not speaking of graphic pictures and descriptions for little children, but a knowledge of the Bible story as it reads). ~"Fifty years ago, when some underground Christians in the church in Germany were asking many of the same questions about the cross, a man who would become a martyr asked, "How could something become cheap which cost God everything ?" Dietrich Bonhoeffer gave his life to remind us that the cross of Christ will forever remain the center of our faith. From the greatest of negatives flow all the positives of our new life in Christ : from conflict, peace ; from pain, healing ;from death, life." ~Michael Card- A Violent Grace "Thus it is written, that the Christ should suffer and rise again from the dead the third day; and that repentance for forgiveness of sins should be proclaimed in His name to all the nations," Luke 24:46,47 "

20 comments:

Mildred said...

Good Morning Kathy, What a blessing to have all the grandchildren together and to share in a week of Bible School with them. May God richly bless you and your family.

Debbie said...

What you say is true. Easter has been sanitized of most spiritual value and replaced instead a celebration of Spring. Bunnies, chicks, eggs and easter grass have replaced the crucifixion and the resurrection. Jesus may be allowed to hold a child or a lamb, but we cannot allow his suffering for us to interfere with the beauty of Spring. We praise him with our lips, but our hearts are so involved in Easter decor has started to rival our Christmas decor.
Your grandchildren shall rise up and call you blessed someday when they recall who it was who told them about a Savior who loved and died for them. Frankly, Sunday School has turned into day care in many churches. Kids no longer know how to sit and listen. It isn't "entertaining" enough for them. How wonderful that your family teaches them at home.

Farmgirl Cyn said...

This was beautiful...There would be no resurrection without the cross. I like the word Debbie used... "sanitized"....it is a perfect description of what most of the church has done to Easter.

LindaSueBuhl said...

So glad you wrote about this - resurrection week is our favorite time of the year - without the cross there would be no resurrection - from His death came eternal life. One of the reasons we'd hope to have home church was to stop splitting children off from the learning and truth of our faith. Y'all give us such hope - there are children being raised in the love and discipline of our Lord and Savior - bless you.

Deb from WhatsInMyAttic said...

I'm afraid that overall, our children are being sheltered from all the harsh realities of life: from the distribution of trophies at school for "achievements" that should be plain duty to the sad scenario of watering down our faith. What a good grandma you are to plan and execute this week for your sweeties. They will take these memories and Christian heritage with them for the rest of their lives. My husband has such fond memories of his Grandma and her faith and it's influence on his life. God bless!

Cora from Hidden Riches said...

I can only say, AMEN to your post, and to all that the others have said above me. I grew up in Sunday School from the cradle roll on up, and DVBS, and every other children's program that was ever created. I can't remember when I learned about the cross --- it was that early in my life. Somehow, somewhere, it was ingrained in me that Jesus loved me and died for me. There really doesn't seem to be much point in ANY religion of ANY kind if it doesn't deal with the cleansing of sin. And only One worthy and righteous could ever be that sacrifice for us. Your idea of VBS is just priceless! You have passed on a gift that will never be forgotten, for sure. Thank you for sharing that!

Karen said...

You made a very good point, Kathy. Children are not immune to suffering, and they need to know that Jesus understands.

Oregon Gifts of Comfort and Joy said...

Hi Kathy,

You sure are wonderful at making memories. What a great idea to have Vacation Bible School at home.

I remember watching the Mel Gibson movie about Jesus, and though it is definitely not for kids, it had such a huge impact on me of the reality of Christ's torture and death, and I had been saved and recommitted for a long time by then.

Still, I do not condemn the cultural celebration of Easter as a springtime event. I think that the two can be combined, but that educating kids and others about the true meaning of Easter is critical so that they will understand what Jesus really did for us.

Thanks so much for stopping by ... glad you liked the pretty dishes. I'll show more on Mon. and Tuesday.

God bless,

Kathy M.

Kathleen From Eggs In My Pocket said...

What a wonderful Grandmother you are to share and witness to your grandchildren in such a touching way! So sweet. blessings,Kathleen

Southern Comfort said...

A Vacation Bible school was an awesome idea Kathy. And a good reminder for the rest of us....I enjoyed Palm Sunday at church and our Easter Egg hunt. But next Friday will be a solemn day, and a solemn service leading up to the Joy of Easter sunrise. This is my favorite church service. I'd love to have been at your Bible school..such a great idea.

PeregrineBlue said...

wow, i get to know you more and more and love you more and more as time goes by. i was thinking of you just a few moments ago while walking through Michaels. you just popped into my head and here i am visiting the family tea party and this latest amazing post.

when i think that JESUS died for ALL of our sins, every single sin all the millions have committed and commit every day, it blows my mind. that kind of LOVE leaves you speechless and humbled.

you have ther most beautiful family kathy and your are the best of grandmothers teaching your grandchildren the most important message of all not only with Bible studies but by example in everything you do and say.

Thistle Cove Farm said...

Children are far more saddened by the angst in their homes than hearing about Jesus and how He loves them. If we don't give our children hope, how then will they find Christ?
Good for you, Kathy; keep up the good work. Well done!

goatpod2 said...

What a blessing to teach your grandchildren about Easter!

Blessings,

Amy

Dolores said...

Kathy, you're the most amazing grandmother/teacher/God's child!!!

Your time spent with these precious children .... teaching them, loving them ...and showing them God's sacrifice, suffering and love..... is priceless!!!
God bless you and your family!

Deanna said...

Kathy, I think it's really neat that you are allowing your grands to watch Christian animations.

As a whole, all of you are watching together as a family very important teaching film.

Have a wonderful Easter,
d

Vickie said...

What could be better than Vacation Bible School with Grandmother as the teacher!!!

Kathy, this is such a wonderful time in the lives of your kiddos and they are so blessed to have a loving, Godley grandmother who wants them to know the Christ.

I agree - we cannot leave out the horrible death of our Lord when we share the gospel with the kids. They need to know, in increments that they can handle. How else does his suffering for our sins impact us and convict us how thankful we should be?

I watched "The Passion of the Christ" once again last night and am re-convicted all over again. It renews me and refreshes me and instills in me once again the love that the Father had for me to send his Son to die for me. We all need to know that.

Good job with your littles!

commoncents said...

WOW!
THANK YOU for posting this! Your homepage rocks!!!

Steve
Common Cents
http://www.commoncts.blogspot.com

amc said...

Lovely post Kathy...I would love to share the same story with Ryan. Do you think he's old enough to watch the version you played for the children?

Daisy said...

Kathy, those kids are very lucky to have you as their grandmother. The Joy is made even greater knowing about the sorrow it grew out of.

Rachel said...

You're such a great grandmother! Will these little blessings be at church this week?? I'd love to meet them all!