Lent can be a hard time for Christian parents to share their faith practices with their kids. After all, Lent is so . . . well, dark.
We start the season by putting ashes on each other’s head and talking about how we will all return to dust one day. And then we end it with the beloved focus of our faith getting murdered. Not really PG. Add to that all the giving up and sacrifice talk in between, and it is not an easy sell.
Advent and Christmas, totally kid friendly (maybe too much so). Lent, it is just more complicated.
So how does one celebrate Lent with their kids?
Well, some friends of mine at Bare Bulb Coffee and I are trying to figure that out.
We are starting next Sunday the 8th by making Lent in a Bag.
“What is Lent in a Bag?” you might ask?
It is this great/cute idea we got from the Building Faith blog written by the folks at the Center for the Ministry of Teaching at Virginia Theological Seminary. (via Pinterest of course).
It uses major symbols of Jesus’ journey to help explain Lent to children. You put a little sand in a bag and then talk about how Jesus was tempted in the desert. You light a candle and talk about how Jesus came into a dark time to be the light of the world.
It combines tactile objects with Biblical stories to explain this road to the cross thing. Brilliant.
We will make our Lent in a Bag bags this coming Sunday at 5 and then send for families home with the bag and some instructions on how to use it throughout the forty days as a weekly devotional.
And then we will gather again.
On March 8th we’ll gather to work on an art project together to further explore the themes of Lent. This will allow the children to use their own creativity to further process some of the major themes of Lent.
And then in April we will gather for a good old fashioned egg hunt. Because Lent is hard work and the joy of Easter deserves some real celebration.
If you are looking for some more ideas on how to celebrate Lent with your children, check out the Families on the Way Pinterest link here.
If you are local, we would love to see you next Sunday at Bare Bulb Coffee. If not, God bless you as you prepare to enter the great 40 days with little ones. It is never an easy journey, but one well worth the risk.