CAUTION: WHAY YOU ARE ABOUT TO READ YOU PROBABLY DON’T WANT YOUR LITTLE ONES TO READ!
Okay, you’ve been forewarned! Now, my question today: how do you handle Santa Claus in your family?
My co-worked Ana and I were talking about this just recently, as her youngest son is of the age where he’s asking lots of questions. Are you honest? If so, how so?
I remember the situation very clearly when Kristen started wondering and I also remember a few friends telling me I had to tell her the truth or she would be made fun of someday for believing in him. Not so fast, my friends. Instead, I simply told her that I believe in Santa and that in order to receive you have to believe. But, our Santa is not just the red-clothed, white-bearded jolly guy. He is St. Nicholas. He is Jesus. He is mom and dad.
You see, in our little family, Santa has never been the main man of Christmas. I’m not sure how Santa handles things in your house, but in the Smith household he only puts little things in our stockings. Our “real” gifts are from each other. Santa? He’s simply a nice guy who fills our stockings.
Kristen is now 20-years-old and yet she still also knows not to have more than three things from mom and dad on her Christmas list. All her life, that’s what she’s gotten, just like Jesus did from the 3 Kings. It’s a family tradition I started and that I hope someday she passes on to her kids.
As many of you know, last Friday was the Feast of St. Nicholas. I always teach the kids in my class that St. Nick was the original Santa Claus. (“santa” means “saint” in Spanish by the way.) I show them pictures of him dressed in his red coat and sporting his white beard and they all say “that’s Santa!” Yes, and no. I then tell them the story about St. Nicholas, who was a real life bishop, being so generous and that one time he heard about three sisters who were so poor they couldn’t afford their weddings, so he snuck onto their roof and dropped bags of gold coins down their chimney. The coins landed in their stockings that were hanging near the fire to dry. Hmmm…stockings on the mantle. That sounds familiar!
So, as we all hang our stockings, and start putting out gifts under the tree, and place Santas all over our homes, let’s remember the history behind those stockings, who those gifts are really from and why we get them, and let’s make sure a “kneeling Santa” is front and center in your Santa collections.
WHY JESUS IS BETTER THAN SANTA
Santa lives at the North Pole
Jesus lives everywhere
Santa rides in a sleigh
Jesus rides in the wind and walks on water
Santa comes only once a year
Jesus is always around
Santa fills your stockings with goodies
Jesus fills your life with goodness
Santa has a belly like a bowl full of jelly
Jesus has a heart full of love
Santa says “Ho, Ho, Ho”
Jesus says “Hope, Hope, Hope”
Santa says “You better not cry”
Jesus says “I will be there when you’re sad”
Santa puts gifts under our tree
Jesus is our gift!