We rang in the new year last week in kindergarten by making “Happy New Year” hats and talking about our goals for 2023. My students expressed wanting to be good friends, obey their moms and dads more, be kinder…and the list goes on! Everyone was excited to grow in the new year.
The best part of celebrating the new year was getting to tie in 2 Corinthians 5:17, “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come.” As a class, we talked about how although it is a great thing to want to grow and be “better,” we can’t do it apart from the power of Christ. No matter how hard we try, we sin and fall short (Romans 3:23, Romans 3:20, Romans 3:10-12). When we trust in Christ alone–his perfect life, atoning death for our sins, and resurrection, we are forgiven and become a new creation. The Holy Spirit changes our hearts and empowers us to live differently (Galatians 5:19-23)!
My students made scribbly, dark caterpillars showing the state of their sinful hearts before they are “in Christ.” Then, they decorated beautiful butterflies to show the new creation they become when they trust in Jesus alone to save them. They had so much fun embellishing the butterflies with jewels and glitter. My prayer is that the Lord uses the lesson we shared to plant the seeds of the gospel down deep in their hearts.