Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Resurrection Cookies

I love Easter. For me it is a reminder of the new life I have (and can experience daily) in Christ. It's the beginning of a new season... brighter colors, vivid sunshine... a clean slate. Jesus was crucified for my sin and for yours, but He didn't stay buried. He didn't stay dead. He conquered sin and death forever! And that victory is evident by the empty tomb on the morning of the third day. (Thank you, Jesus, for your redemption of me!)

I'll be honest: one fun aspect of Easter for me is puttin' the babes in some crisp clothes & headin' to church (and then going to my favorite little road to take spring pics). This year my husband will be gone on Easter Sunday, but we'll still do that even with Dad on the road (Day 2 somewhere in Cali headed to Baja with our 35 other kids for the Spring Break Mission Trip). And I'll still make ham and yummy potatoes and rolls.

But really, for reals, it's not about what we wear or what we eat. It's about the event that changed the world, the Man, The One True Living God, Jesus, Who changed the world and made such an impact that history is literally divided into Before and After (based on His first coming) so I wanted to do something with the kids to show them how big of a deal Resurrection Sunday really is.

We have been playing with our Resurrection Eggs for the past couple weeks (something we do even throughout the year if the kids ask for it). But something I read last year from a MOPS publication inspired me to try these Resurrection Cookies with my kids. They're going to looooove helping out AND they're going to totally digg the "pictures" behind each of the elements of the story/recipe. I can't wait!

I couldn't find the original MOPS resource, but I did an online search and I'll copy and paste the recipe and story here... just click the link to go to the original page to print out your own instructions. And let me know if you and your family bake these together this weekend! I can't wait to hear what my kids will say (and yours too)!

(I wasn't able to find any images online of the cookies, but you can bet your buttons I'll post some.)

Homemade Crafts and Gifts (featured column by various authors)
Resurrection Story Cookies
by Michelle Jones

I'm not sure where this recipe first originated, but it has been passed around the globe for many years. It's a very meaningful way to celebrate the resurrection of Jesus with our children. These cookies are made the evening before and cooked in a warm oven overnight so they will be ready to eat on Easter morning.
* * *
Preheat the oven to 300 degrees.

Ingredients & Supplies Needed:
3 egg whites

1 c. whole pecans

1 tsp. vinegar

1/4 tsp. salt

1 c. sugar

Zip plastic bag

Wooden spoon


The Bible

Place pecans in the plastic bag and let children beat them with the wooden spoon to break into small pieces. Discuss how after Jesus was arrested, He was beaten by the Roman soldiers.

Read John 19:1-3

Put the vinegar into a mixing bowl and let each child smell the strong aroma. Talk about how when Jesus was thirsty on the cross, He was given vinegar to drink.

Read John 19:28-30

Add egg whites to the vinegar (eggs represent life). Discuss how Jesus gave His life to give us life.

Read John 10:10-11

Sprinkle a little salt into each child's hand. Let them taste it and brush the rest into the bowl. Explain that this represents the salty tears shed by Jesus' followers, and the bitterness of our own sin.

Read Luke 23:27

So far, the ingredients are not very appetizing. Add 1 cup sugar. Explain that the sweetest part of the story is that Jesus died because He loves us. He wants us to know and belong to Him.

Read Psalms 34:8 and John 3:16

Beat the ingredients together with a mixer on high speed for 12-15 minutes until stiff peaks are formed. Explain that the color white represents the purity in God's eyes of those whose sins have been cleansed by Jesus.

Read Isaiah 1:18 and John 3:1-3

Fold in the broken pecans. Drop cookies by a rounded teaspoon onto cookie sheet covered with waxed paper. Explain that each mound represents the rocky tomb where Jesus' body was laid.

Read Matthew 27:57-60

Put the cookie sheet in the oven, close the door.

Give each child a piece of tape and seal the oven door together. Explain that Jesus' tomb was sealed.

Read Matthew 27:65-66

Now it's time to go to sleep.
Explain to the children that they may feel sad to leave the cookies in the oven overnight. Jesus' followers were in despair when the tomb was sealed.

Read John 16:20 and 22

On Resurrection (Easter) morning, open the oven and give everyone a cookie.
Notice that the surface of the cookie is cracked.
Take a bite.
The cookies are hollow!
On the first Resurrection, Jesus' followers were amazed to find the tomb open and empty.

Read Matthew 28:1-9

Editor's note: I'm also including the scripture for anyone who would like to read it right now...
After the Sabbath, at dawn on the first day of the week, Mary Magdalene and the other Mary went to look at the tomb.

There was a violent earthquake, for an angel of the Lord came down from heaven and, going to the tomb, rolled back the stone and sat on it. His appearance was like lightning, and his clothes were white as snow. The guards were so afraid of him that they shook and became like dead men.

The angel said to the women, "Do not be afraid, for I know that you are looking for Jesus, who was crucified. He is not here; he has risen, just as he said. Come and see the place where he lay. Then go quickly and tell his disciples: 'He has risen from the dead and is going ahead of you into Galilee. There you will see him.' Now I have told you."

So the women hurried away from the tomb, afraid yet filled with joy, and ran to tell his disciples. Suddenly Jesus met them. "Greetings," he said. They came to him, clasped his feet and worshiped him.

And continuing with Matthew 28:10-20

Then Jesus said to them, "Do not be afraid. Go and tell my brothers to go to Galilee; there they will see me." While the women were on their way, some of the guards went into the city and reported to the chief priests everything that had happened. When the chief priests had met with the elders and devised a plan, they gave the soldiers a large sum of money, telling them, "You are to say, 'His disciples came during the night and stole him away while we were asleep.' If this report gets to the governor, we will satisfy him and keep you out of trouble." So the soldiers took the money and did as they were instructed. And this story has been widely circulated among the Jews to this very day.

Then the eleven disciples went to Galilee, to the mountain where Jesus had told them to go. When they saw him, they worshiped him; but some doubted. Then Jesus came to them and said. "All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age."

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