I remember making these cookies as a kid. It was one of my favorite things to do at Easter. We didn't do it every year because Easter is a busy time, but guess what I currently have a lot of... TIME!
Today, I am feeling so thankful for all that is happening right now. Sometimes, being at home all day everyday is not fun but then I remember, a year ago I would have been stressed and busy. The last thing on my mind would have been to take the time to explain the Easter story to my daughter in an interactive way. I would have pushed that responsibility on to someone else.
This Easter, with our focus on what really matters, we are taking the time to teach the Easter story to Ellie in many different ways. Our favorite way is, Resurrection Cookies! So let's get started!
While making theses cookies, we read through the Easter story. After reading the scripture, we talked about it in words that Ellie could understand. We did this so she could retell the story at the end. (You can find our preschool re-cap this in purple.)
You will need:
1 cup pecans
1 tsp vinegar
pinch of salt
1 cup sugar
3 egg whites
FIRST, Preheat the oven to 300°F. (Don't skip this step!)
Then lay out all of your ingredients.
Read John 19: 1-3
"So Pilate took Jesus and had him whipped. The soldiers, having braided a crown from thorns, set it on his head, threw a purple robe over him, and approached him with, “Hail, King of the Jews!” Then they greeted him with slaps in the face."
Put the pecans in a plastic bag and hit them with a wooden spoon or rolling pin, breaking them into small pieces. We beat the pecans like Jesus was beaten by the Roman soldiers.
(Bad guys hit Jesus. Do you like it when people hit you?)
Read John 19:28-30
Jesus, seeing that everything had been completed so that the Scripture record might also be complete, then said, “I’m thirsty.” A jug of sour wine was standing by. Someone put a sponge soaked with the wine on a javelin and lifted it to his mouth. After he took the wine, Jesus said, “It’s done . . . complete.” Bowing his head, he offered up his spirit.
Smell the vinegar. Talk about how Jesus was forced to drink vinegar when he was thirsty on the cross. Add vinegar to the mixing bowl.
(When Jesus was thirsty they made him drink very sour juice. Do you think you would want to drink this?)
Read John 10:10-11
A thief is only there to steal and kill and destroy. I came so they can have real and eternal life, more and better life than they ever dreamed of. I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep.
Add the egg whites to the bowl. Eggs represent the life that Jesus gives to us.
Read John 23:27
A huge crowd of people followed, along with women weeping and carrying on.
Taste the salt. This salt represents the tears that were shed by Jesus's followers and the bitterness of our sins. Add a pinch of salt to the bowl.
(The people who loved Jesus, were sad that he was being hurt by the bad people and they cried.)
So far this story doesn't sound very sweet, does it? Our cookies are made of sour and bitter stuff. So is the Easter story. The beginning of the Easter story is very sad and it doesn't sound very nice. But there is good news! Our story is about to get much sweeter, just like our cookies!
Read John 3:16-17
This is how much God loved the world: He gave his Son, his one and only Son. And this is why: so that no one need be destroyed; by believing in him, anyone can have a whole and lasting life. God didn’t go to all the trouble of sending his Son merely to point an accusing finger, telling the world how bad it was. He came to help, to put the world right again.
This sugar is sweet, just like Jesus's love for us. Add the sugar to the bowl.
(Jesus loves you very, very much. He loves you so much that he died for you.)
Begin to beat the eggs to form peaks (approx. 10 mins)
Read Isaiah 1:18
“Come. Sit down. Let’s argue this out.”
This is God’s Message:
“If your sins are blood-red,
they’ll be snow-white.
If they’re red like crimson,
they’ll be like wool.
Look at the mixture. Do you see how it is turning white? Our sins make us unclean, but Jesus died on the cross so that we could be washed clean by his blood. Now, when God looks at us he sees his children that have been washed clean and are now white as snow.
(When we are bad, it makes our insides all dirty. But Jesus forgives us for all our sins so we can be clean again!)
Gently fold in the broken pecans
Read Matthew 27:57-60
Late in the afternoon a wealthy man from Arimathea, a disciple of Jesus, arrived. His name was Joseph. He went to Pilate and asked for Jesus’ body. Pilate granted his request. Joseph took the body and wrapped it in clean linens, put it in his own tomb, a new tomb only recently cut into the rock, and rolled a large stone across the entrance. Then he went off.
Drop the cookies in teaspoon sized mounds on a lined cookie sheet. These mounds represent the rocky tomb where Jesus's body was placed.
Read Matthew 27:65-66
Pilate told them, “You will have a guard. Go ahead and secure it the best you can.” So they went out and secured the tomb, sealing the stone and posting guards.
Place the cookies inside the oven and turn it off. Seal the oven with masking tape. Now, the oven is sealed just like Jesus's tomb was sealed.
(Then they locked up the cave Jesus was in so no one could get in and no one could get out.)
Now, go to bed.
Are you sad to leave the cookies in the oven? Jesus's followers were sad when the tomb was sealed and they had to leave Jesus there.
Read John 16:20 and 22
You’re going to be in deep mourning while the godless world throws a party. You’ll be sad, very sad, but your sadness will develop into gladness.
The sadness you have right now is similar to that pain, but the coming joy is also similar. When I see you again, you’ll be full of joy, and it will be a joy no one can rob from you. You’ll no longer be so full of questions.
THE NEXT MORNING
On Easter morning, open the oven and give everyone a cookie. As you take a bite you will discover that the cookies are hollow. On the first Easter, Jesus's followers were amazed to find the tomb open and empty!
Read Matthew 28: 1-9
After the Sabbath, as the first light of the new week dawned, Mary Magdalene and the other Mary came to keep vigil at the tomb. Suddenly the earth reeled and rocked under their feet as God’s angel came down from heaven, came right up to where they were standing. He rolled back the stone and then sat on it. Shafts of lightning blazed from him. His garments shimmered snow-white. The guards at the tomb were scared to death. They were so frightened, they couldn’t move.
The angel spoke to the women: “There is nothing to fear here. I know you’re looking for Jesus, the One they nailed to the cross. He is not here. He was raised, just as he said. Come and look at the place where he was placed.
“Now, get on your way quickly and tell his disciples, ‘He is risen from the dead. He is going on ahead of you to Galilee. You will see him there.’ That’s the message.”
The women, deep in wonder and full of joy, lost no time in leaving the tomb. They ran to tell the disciples. Then Jesus met them, stopping them in their tracks. “Good morning!” he said. They fell to their knees, embraced his feet, and worshiped him. Jesus said, “You’re holding on to me for dear life! Don’t be frightened like that. Go tell my brothers that they are to go to Galilee, and that I’ll meet them there.”