I love the idea of having a traditional food, that carries some symbolic meaning, in association with the major Christian days of remembrance– especially a breakfast food, because it starts the day with your mind in the right place.
For example, ever since our kids were born, we’ve traditionally eaten birthday cake on Christmas morning. We start our our Christmas morning singing, “Happy Birthday” to Jesus, before there is any talk of presents being opened. (By the way, I’m well aware that Jesus was almost assuredly NOT born in December — so you can save yourself the trouble of writing to tell me.)
For most of the years of our marriage, on the Thursday before “Easter” Sunday (really I prefer to call it “Resurrection” Sunday) my husband has lead our family, and usually quite a few guests, in a traditional Passover meal. It is a wonderful, Biblical, way to center your thoughts on Jesus’ death, burial and resurrection — since He is so clearly prophesied in that Old Testament meal.
However, the Passover didn’t really fulfill my desire to have a specific breakfast food to start off “Easter” morning with. So this year I began to look into ideas in this direction.
First I found several “Crown of Thorns” bread recipes, but I was discouraged because they require so much time for the bread to rise that I’d have to get up at 3 in the morning to have it ready to eat for breakfast. (Either that, or eat it day old.)
Then I found this wonderful “Resurrection Cookie” recipe, by Motherhood On A Dime, which comes complete with scriptures to go with every ingredient, so that your kids can make it with you. You do it with your kids the night before Resurrection Sunday, and end by sealing the oven till morning (just like the tomb was sealed). Then, when you open the oven in the morning, you find that the cookies are hollow and empty… just like the empty tomb! I just LOVE this idea!
But I think I might just like this final idea best. It doesn’t take a lot of time, it could easily be done quickly on Easter Sunday morning before going to church, and it has wonderfully sweet symbolism! A friend of mine on Facebook shared it just this morning. (Thank you Shauna L.!)
1 can refrigerated crescent roll dough
8 large marshmallows
1. Give each child one triangle shaped section of crescent roll. This represents the tomb.
2. Each child takes one marshmallow which represents the body of Christ.
3. Dip the marshmallow in the butter and roll in cinnamon and sugar mixture. This represents the oils and spices the body was anointed with upon burial.
4. Lay the marshmallow on the dough and carefully wrap it around the marshmallow. (Make sure all seams are pinched together well; otherwise the marshmallow will “ooze” out of the seams.)
5. Bake according to package directions.
7. Break open the tomb and the body of Christ is no longer there! Celebrate God’s love!
Just a few final thoughts on this subject of using food as a teaching tool for Biblical truths. If you want to know where the idea originated, just flip back in your Bible to the book of Exodus and read about the Passover meal that God set up and commanded the Jewish people to celebrate every year as a memorial.
If you ask any professional educator and they will talk about how people learn best when they are able to take in the information in multiple ways simultaneously– it’s called a “multisensory” approach. The using symbolic food, the retelling of a spiritual narrative, and repeating it regularly, is an absolutely BRILLIANT idea. (Go figure… God thought it up!)
Just think… the smells, flavors, and sights of those traditional Passover foods, were absorbed by an entire people group, year after year after year along with the telling and retelling the story of God rescuing his people from bondage by the blood of the lamb. And that repetitive “teaching meal” is one of the primary bits of “glue” that has held the Jewish nation together as a people group over the centuries!
When Jesus ate the “Last Supper” with his disciples, He was continuing that very same multisensory teaching by showing how he was getting ready to fulfill the prophesy of the Passover. Jesus declared that the wine, representing the blood of the Passover lamb, prophesied His own blood which would be shed for us. He then tells us that unleavened bread was a prophesy of His sinless body broken for us. Every time we partake of “communion” or “the Lord’s Supper” we remembering the Lord’s death until he comes again.
I think we’ve got plenty of reason to take hold of the multisensory approach — specifically the use of traditional and symbolicly meaningful foods — to teach our children about the major Christian days of remembrance.