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Friday, March 25, 2016

Flannel and Forgiveness - a Story for Easter

Flannel graph of Joseph with the coat of many colors
in the Old Testament book of Genesis, chapter 37

My fascination with dolls, puppets, and other tactile teaching aids has intrigued me all of my life.

When I was just a little girl, my mother was preparing to teach a children's Sunday School class using a flannel graph story board. She asked me if I would like to watch while she practiced telling the Bible story, and of course I did. 


Zacchaeus
in the Gospel of Luke, chapter 19

I don't remember what the Bible story was. Perhaps it was about Zacchaeus, the "wee little man" who had overcharged many people with his tax collecting. I do recall a "today" story that went along with it. There was a little girl who stole some perfume from her mother's dressing table. Apparently the perfume got on her hands, and the tell-tale scent of her naughtiness was discovered. The overall theme of both stories was that we all have done wrong and need Jesus Christ to make us right with God.

Even at the young age of six years, I knew I had done wrong things.  My little sister did not always play like I wanted her to and we had our squabbles. Nobody had to teach me how to be selfish; I had figured that out on my own. Yes, I was aware of my sins.

Through my mother's stories on the flannel graph, I understood that I needed God's forgiveness and love; I needed Jesus in my heart. I wanted that. 

So on a sunny Wednesday afternoon my mother led me in a prayer. I asked Jesus to forgive me of my sins and to live in my heart. As strange as it sounds, I felt different. I knew I had been forgiven and I felt new inside.

One of the first things I did after that was to invite my neighbor friend, Kathleen, to come to our church prayer meeting with us that night. I wanted her to know Jesus the way I did, and I reasoned that coming to church with me was the way to go about it.

Her mother did not allow her to come with us. Years later my father told me they knew my salvation was real because the first thing I wanted to do was to share the good news about Jesus. 

Asking Jesus into your heart is the happiest thing you can do and then you want others to know that same joy. 

Easter is when we remember and celebrate that Jesus paid the cost of our sins by dying on the cross in our place, and then rose from the grave three days later. He has paid the debt for our sin and lives eternally. When we accept in faith that what He has done for us saves us from eternal punishment, we  also have the promise of eternal life with Him. 

My story is simple, perhaps too simple for some to accept. But living in a personal relationship with Jesus Christ for nearly all of my life is the most important decision I ever made. This is why I celebrate Easter.


For God so loved the world
that He gave His only begotten Son,
that whosoever believes in Him
shall not perish but have
everlasting life.
John 3:16

If you would like to share why you celebrate Easter, you can do so in the comments section below. I'd love to read what you have to say!

4 comments:

  1. I celebrate Easter, because my God is alive, and lives in me, and through me.

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  2. Easter reminds us that it was very costly to pay for our sins; and that Jesus was willing to pay that price for us. We have eternal life through Him who died for us and rose again to live forever.

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  3. Oh my, the sacrifice he endured that we might live forever! Easter is renewal for Christians! In the Catholic church, we renew our baptismal promises at the Easter Vigil. He lives!!

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  4. I can't say it any better than what your other commenters have said...thank you sweet friend for such a lovely post. Blessings

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