Jesus really is the reason-Sorry Santa!
Friends, please hear me out on this. I promise we don’t have a dull Christmas without Santa Claus It’s still a wonderfully joyous time of year for our children!
I want to start by saying that, yes we’ve told our kids all about St. Nicholas, and we explained that people dress up like him to celebrate and honor his legacy. They see Santa Claus sort of as the equivalent of people dressing up like a cartoon character. So they do still get excited when they see the big red suit, and hear the jingling bells, but they know it’s all in good fun, and never intended to take the place of Jesus. Also, they’ve never had a slip up! They’re aware that other people believe, and celebrate differently than we do, and It’s not our place to tell others what to do.
So let’s begin. Being new to Christian mothering I wasn’t sure what I was supposed to do. Should I make it about Jesus and Santa, just Jesus, mostly Santa? After talking it through, we made the decision to focus solely on Jesus, (my husband never celebrated good ol’ St. Nick so this was easier for him than it was for me). We never really considered what others were doing, we just know we had conviction about this, and would do it our way. Over the years though, we’ve found that there are many Christians who’ve found a way to do both Santa and Jesus. I’m not here to tell you what’s best for you, just shining a little light on why we do what we do. There are 3 reasons that we discussed which led us to where we are today.
- First, we worried what the kids would think when they found out Santa wasn’t real. Would they begin to doubt other things we were teaching? I never wanted to plant seeds of doubt in my children. I worried that if we were teaching Santa, and he wasn’t real, then would they start to think the same about Jesus?
- Second, and the biggest reason we decided to forego Santa and focus on Jesus, was because we never wanted to confuse our kids on what Christmas is really about. We never felt Jesus needed to share this day. This is the day that our Savior came into this world. That’s reason enough to give this entire day of celebration over to him.
There’ve been times we’ve had to endure laughs from others about the decision we made (God forbid I ever laughed at someone else’s parenting choices, but that’s for another post). Can you believe people have told us that we were robbing them of the magic of childhood? Really? Their entire childhood is made up of this one issue? I think that’s a bit dramatic, sheesh! They still have magical moments. In fact, we have an Elf that hides at night so when the kids wake up every morning, she’s in another silly place. The difference with this is that she never takes the spotlight of Christmas. In fact, she encourages the kids to act more like Jesus each day leading up to our special celebration of his birth. Then on Christmas day, she sits up on the shelf and gives the day entirely to Jesus.
Oh, and as for that third reason:
- “I paid for that!” We laugh about this one, but my husband and I worked hard to provide a happy day for the kids. We want them to know about sacrifice, generosity, and appreciation. So maybe it’s a bit selfish, but we want them to know that the gifts are from us, but ultimately all our blessings are provided by God.
To our children, I summed up our reasons like this:
How special would you feel if we made you share your birthday with your brother/sister? Now, that they understood!
Friends, I truly hope your able to put the birth of Christ into human terms. Imagine the intimate details that we’re not recorded in the Bible-real pain from a scared mother, and stepfather trying to help his wife give birth with no help, no bed, no comfort. If you need help, please do yourself a favor and check out this amazingly detailed telling of the Birth of Jesus by Ken Gire. You will be so blessed by it.