Easter egg hunts were one of my favorite church memories as a child. Plastic eggs filled with chocolate and other treasures dotted the church lawn like they came down with the rain overnight. Hard boiled eggs were dyed by someone’s loving hands and then hid near bushes and trees. Let’s be honest, though, these were the slightly less desirable bounty, left by the big kids for wide eyed preschoolers and toddlers slowed down by wonderment.
Easter egg hunts meant our parents didn’t have to drag us out of bed bleary eyed for Sunrise service. All they had to say was “Happy Easter!” followed by that blessed phrase, “He is Risen!”
We knew what that meant- grace, joy, Easter Breakfast, and you’ve got it- the Egg Hunt.
Stuff like this matters for kids at church.
While the message may not be as overt as the Sunday School lesson or the Children’s Sermon, it does share grace with them in a way that I don’t think our adult brains can comprehend. Eggs-schmeggs, sure, but to a child’s heart this speaks something different –
“I matter in this place.”
“I am seen in the Body of Christ.”
“My presence is not just tolerated, but welcomed and invited here.”
“These people speak my language, and I want to be a part of it.”
This layer of care for our church kids guides hearts to be open. Those little ears (and big ears) hear the message of Christ from your lips and then see the love of the Savior in action. They connect the dots between real life, real truth, real action, real faith and His real Word.
Once I was involved in children’s ministry, as an adult, and then bringing my own kids to church on Easter morning, I found the Great Egg Hunt fun, but lacking. It was special, great for photos and joy-filled church memories, but not quite what I was going for as a teaching moment. There had to be, not a better way, but something different to help direct the kids to the Word in a fun way, with treats, because, you know, Easter.
So, I googled and pinterested the topic to death. I found lots of great ideas and alternatives. Praises to the Lord for creating many ideas, minds, and a zealous Spirit!
I would reference blog posts and idea makers here, but I really scanned about 47 different ideas and decided to create my own.For my own children’s ministry I decided to write my own Easter Scavenger Hunt. I do encourage you to look through Pinterest and search engines for similar blogs and ideas, however, since the origin of the idea for an Easter Scavenger Hunt isn’t mine.
This is an easy and fun alternative to help kids and families connect the treats they receive from your church or family gathering on Easter morning to the Word of Life. Each item in the Hunt is chosen for a specific reason that is linked to a Bible verse, for instance…
You hide the items for the Hunt around the church or lawn, your house, a park, anywhere, and give families the list of verses to read with the corresponding items.
I have attached the PDF of my own Easter Scavenger Hunt to make it easy for you- just print and duplicate!
If parents are still eating Easter breakfast, ask for volunteers or members of your youth group to help little hands find their treats. I wouldn’t necessarily disclude the youth from this hunt, though. I guarantee those bigger hands are going to want to get in on these treats, and they are an often forgotten age group who like fun and creative ways to learn the Scriptures as well. You could make them work harder to figure out the items by only giving them the verse list. This is especially fun if you’re feeling ornery. You could also give the kids an extra bag of the goodies and tell them to give it to a friend who didn’t get to go to church on Easter morning. You can trim your own hunt to make it smaller, or you could add to it.
Now I want to show up at all your churches and family events to see how you all used the hunt! Please share pictures or stories in the comments section so we can all share in the fun!
Easter joy to you all!
It is by His grace-filled death and resurrection that we are Saved, Redeemed, Set Free, Restored, and Made New. Let’s go share that message with big and little ones everywhere!