Make Your Spring Holy Day Preparations a Family Activity
Hurried preparation for the DUB is not conducive to the proper teaching of children.

God places the responsibility for the religious training of children upon each converted parent in God’s Church. The most important thing that we as parents can do for our children is teach them about God’s way of life. God even commands us to do so. “And these words, which I command thee this day, shall be in thine heart: And thou shalt teach them diligently unto thy children, and shalt talk of them when thou sittest in thine house, and when thou walkest by the way, and when thou liest down, and when thou risest up” (Deuteronomy 6:6-7).

God knows that children learn best through activity and adult example. In verses 6 and 7, God encourages parents to capture the happenings from everyday life and use them to drive home important spiritual lessons. God says that we are to teach our children in our “house,” in the “way,” in the morning and at night. In other words, being a responsible parent is a 24-hour-a-day job.

Get Your Children Involved

Preparing for the spring holy days provides us ample opportunities to teach our children vital spiritual lessons about God’s plan for mankind. Even God gives us very specific instructions to teach our children about the Passover and Days of Unleavened Bread. “And it shall come to pass, when your children shall say unto you, What mean ye by this service? That ye shall say, It is the sacrifice of the Lord’s passover, who passed over the houses of the children of Israel in Egypt, when he smote the Egyptians, and delivered our houses. And the people bowed the head and worshipped” (Exodus 12:26-27).

We cannot assume that our children will learn about the spring holy days by listening to sermons and Bible studies. You and I must teach them. The best way we can teach them is to get them involved. This is not easy. It will take planning and preparation on our part. But do we really have a choice?

Finding Sin

The most vital spiritual lesson of the Passover and spring holy days is the incredible destructiveness of sin. Human sin brought about the death of Jesus Christ. And human sin will cause our eternal death unless we repent and seek God’s righteousness (Romans 6:23). The great tragedy is that, all too often, serious sin can be hidden from our view.

But there is a positive side to all this knowledge. It is found in the Days of Unleavened Bread. God gave us the spring holy days to teach us that we can find sin, and with His help, put it out of our lives. God uses the physical lesson of leaven to help us adults understand how sin works. We need to show our children how sin works by getting them involved in cleaning for the Days of Unleavened Bread. Finding leaven is a tailor-made activity for our young people. Each child, even toddlers, should have some job or activity related to finding leaven. In our family, we have always tried to assign each child a particular area of the house. When our children were toddlers, we directed them to hunt for leaven in their toy box. Yes, we made them pull each toy out. It was always great fun. We didn’t always necessarily find leaven. But our toddlers felt part of all the activity.

As you teach your child to look for leaven, look with them. Talk with your child about sin and how it is like crumbs—it is everywhere! Be sure to plan ahead so you can spend time with your children.

Hurried preparation for these days is not conducive to the proper teaching of children.

Build Memories

Some of my family’s fondest memories are centered around the Days of Unleavened Bread. There have been many humorous events involving leaven that have happened to us over the years. We enjoy talking about them as each new holy day season comes around. We think one situation that happened to us is particularly funny.

After traveling some distance to and from services on one first day of Unleavened Bread, we stopped for pizza! We did not discover our error until we were placing our order. At the cash register I was ordering the most luscious toppings we could imagine. “Yes, we want double cheese, black olives, mushrooms and ground beef.” Being health conscious, I thought salads! “We would also like salads.” After ordering the salads, I very dutifully said, “And hold the croutons on the salads.” Then it dawned on us—the pizza would also be leavened. Caught in a juggernaut of decision between looking bad and wasting money, I quickly said, “Oh by the way, hold the pizza too!”

There are many other stories we can tell from our experiences. In fact, our family could probably write a book of such stories. The lessons of these days are living memories for us. Ones which we do not easily forget. Build these kinds of memories for your family.

You do this by making activities for the Days of Unleavened Bread fun. Children love to hunt for things. Make looking for leaven an adventure. When your child discovers leaven—reward them. This is a biblical principal. “Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it” (Proverbs 22:6).

Adult Example

All too often Proverbs 22:6 has been seen only in the context of child discipline. This verse certainly speaks to discipline, but it also includes the importance of adult example. Experts agree that children learn most effectively by example. This verse shows all of us adults that we should spend time teaching our children “the way they should go.”

Our children learn to approach God’s way of life in the same way we do. Do we look forward to the spring holy days in a positive, exciting way? Do we diligently seek out leaven as God directs? (Exodus 13:7; 1 Corinthians 5:8). Do we approach preparation for these Days of Unleavened Bread happily?

If we are positive about this season, our children will be positive. If we get excited, they will be excited. If we are diligent in our preparations, they will be diligent. God designed the holy days to make us happy (John 13:17). If we are happy about the Days of Unleavened Bread, our children will be happy!

When all is said and done, we must remember that when our children grow up they will basically act like we do. We must realize that we are shaping our child’s future relationship with God by what we do today! Our children need to see us obeying God’s requirements for keeping the Days of Unleavened Bread. It is tradition at my house for me to deleaven the toaster. I do not particularly like this job. At times, I have not even tried to hide my disfavor for it. Now this job has become a sign that Passover is at the doors. When I begin to shake that toaster upside down, Passover is only 24 hours away!

Building the Family of God

Traditions bind a family together. In His holy day plan, God has given us traditions that have great meaning for us. God has given us traditions that will last forever (Leviticus 23). Active participation in the Days of Unleavened Bread by all family members will give you memorable traditions and build family unity.

We need to look beyond our own family though. It is true that God has given us traditions in this life to bring us happiness. But God also wants to accomplish much more than our physical happiness. God does want us to have strong families, but He also wants a strong spiritual Family of His own. “And did not he make one? Yet had he the residue of the spirit. And wherefore one? That he might seek a godly seed. Therefore take heed to your spirit, and let none deal treacherously against the wife of his youth” (Malachi 2:15). God wants a righteous Family with godly children.

We need to realize that by faithfully keeping the Days of Unleavened Bread as individual families we are actually building the Family of God. Let’s not take this time of year casually or plan for it haphazardly. Passover is just a little more than two weeks away. Plan important activities for your family. If you make your Days of Unleavened Bread preparations a family activity, the benefits will last forever.