I’m always trying to find ways to make the story of Easter creative and fresh for the kids who have tuned it out. It’s sad how repeated truth loses its value to the hearer (is that how trite sayings are born?). This year I was challenged to see if I could write a mini-saga. A mini-saga is a 50-word story. I’m sure you’ve heard of the Six Word Memoirs, a web and print sensation where people see if they can write their life story in only 6 words. It was Ernest Hemingway who set the precedent, writing a classically sad story (not a memoir), “For sale: baby shoes, never worn.”
Clearly, I am not Ernest Hemingway. (Six words for those of you keeping score on Twitter). I thought it would be fun to collect 50-word mini-sagas of the Gospel. We’re going to take these mini-sagas and share them with our 2nd-5th graders this Easter. I’m praying that hearing the whole story in exactly 50 words from different people will bring the story alive in a way many kids have never heard before. I’m praying that the stories submitted will impact the kids on the margins.
I asked lots and lots of people to contribute, a few helped out. I’ll post what I have so far and invite you to join the discussion.
God loves you. God hates sin. Everyone sins. God sent his son, Jesus, to pay for your sins. It’s a free gift. You need to say, “Jesus, I’m sorry for my sin. Thank you for dying on the cross for me. My life belongs to you.” Would you like that?
God created people to worship God. We sinned separating us from God. Jesus, who never sinned, died on the cross to pay for our sins. God raised Jesus from the dead. We can receive forgiveness of sin; have a relationship with God worshiping him again now and in heaven forever.
The gospel in fifty words; you’re crazy. Wait. “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.” Good huh? A guy named John wrote that. He knew Jesus really well. You can too.
For me, believing in Jesus was like standing at the foot of the cross. As Jesus was crucified, he was shedding tears for me. The tears ran down his blood stained face and fell into my heart, washing away everything bad. For the first time I felt clean; free; forgiven.
Everything started with God: the universe, time, humanity. But evil crept in. All was lost. Yet God chose a people and struck a deal no one could ever break. Jesus was the sacrifice to bring humanity back into relationship with God. Redemption! By grace I can know God now, evermore.
This is a really powerful exercise. Take your time. Only 50 words.