I love the scene in The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King, the last book in J.R.R. Tolkien’s trilogy, where the unlikely heroes, Frodo and Sam, are making their last, desperate effort to destroy the one ring in the depths of Mt. Doom. What makes the final destruction of the ring so incredibly magnificent and satisfying is the context. Before that, we have been taken on a long journey that has introduced us to the magnitude of evil, despair, and ruin brought about by the ring and its influence. You don’t simply go from a peaceful, idealistic life in the Shire to the triumphant destruction of the ring. The story would have lost its grandeur and appeal if Tolkien had not shown us the evil and despair. This example can serve to remind us about the necessity of giving children the proper context for understanding the glorious triumph of Jesus’ resurrection. What was the “long journey” leading up to His resurrection? What did Jesus triumph over? Why is it good news for us? How should we respond?
Resurrection Sunday (Easter) is just eight weeks away. How could you use that time with your children to more intentionally set the context for Jesus’ resurrection and answer these questions? Here are several resources to consider and some suggestions about how each could be used:
A 31-page picture book consisting of four chapters: Creation, Fall, Redemption, Restoration. Read through a chapter a day for several weeks until children can recite the main themes.
A 37-page picture book for elementary-age children. A great option to read together in the week leading up to Resurrection Sunday.
A 26-chapter interactive devotional book for elementary-age children. Begin reading five chapters a week, starting five weeks before Resurrection Sunday.
A 15-chapter interactive devotional book for families, especially for those with older elementary-age children and youth. Begin reading three chapters a week, five weeks before Resurrection Sunday.
This booklet includes 10 devotions that highlight the essential truths of the gospel. Two weeks before Resurrection Sunday, begin reading five devotions every week.
This substantial, full-color, illustrated book is written in an interactive manner for elementary-age children. Chapters 120–129 recall the events from Jesus’ entry into Jerusalem (Palm Sunday) through His resurrection. It also includes a concise summary of how the Old Testament pointed to Jesus. Begin reading five chapters a week in the two weeks proceeding Resurrection Day.
A full-color mini-booklet that highlights and simply explains 10 essential gospel truths. A simple way for families to recall and focus on the main points of the gospel. Also, it’s an affordable resource for churches to give away to families who attend Resurrection Day worship.