There have been a few things that have really been on my mind this holiday season. All of them center on Jesus and Santa/Presents. We actually have a significant number of friends and acquaintances that either don’t do Santa or have tried to not do Santa. For some it’s the worry that Santa will take away from Jesus and for others it is the worry about “lying” to their kids. For a while I’ve thought that we would do Santa in our house when we have kids but just make sure it wasn’t the main thing. That being said I try not to buy things with Santa on it just since I don’t want it to be the focus (but I do have Santa things and if it’s super cute I’m in). On the other hand I had no problem asking the nieces if they were excited for Santa to come and jingling my bracelets and asking them if they heard Santa’s sleighbells as we were piling into the cars to go to church on Christmas eve.
I was in church 5 times this last week yes 5 (no that’s not normal but 3-4 times is for an average Christmas week. We go to Lutheran Church Easter and Christmas are filled with services). The girls perked up every time they heard the words Jesus, Jacob and Mary in songs, in the sermons, with people talking, etc. They sang Jesus Loves Me all week preparing for the Sunday School Christmas program which is chock-full of deep theology, seriously it’s not fluff. And I’ve got 3 nativity sets adorning our front window 2 of which they can play with. And when asked what time of year it was their reply was “Jesus Melon’s birthday” (yeah we don’t know where the melon came from).
(T rocked the Jesus Loves me hand motions and L rocked the nose picking but she sang it when we were in the car I think she was just being shy)
So while we played the Santa game I think the girls got it. And I know this isn’t how every family will do it and it may not be what’s right for other families, but I’m really encouraged that both can be possible. In the same way that I look forward to playing make believe with my future kids I look forward to keeping the tradition of Santa and giving them presents. But even more than that I look forward to teaching them the true meaning of Christmas.
I’ve been frustrated about the news saying things like “for some families there will be no Christmas” when they are talking about the hardships some families are experiencing and how they need the the rest of the community’s help to get presents for their kids. And yes I gave presents to Angel Tree and yes I believe those of us who are more fortunate should help make sure that others do have presents, but, Christmas is not about presents, at least not about material ones. Christmas is about Jesus being born for each and every one of us. I think that’s why the words of “Infant Holy Infant Lowly” that I posted on Christmas Eve stood out to me this year. Any ways those are a few things that have been on my mind.