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Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Adrienne Patterson: The Real Meaning of Christmas Part 2...

Another of week of December has rolled by and we are knee deep in either shopping for gifts or for the less organized, just beginning our lists. Gift buying has become a bit more difficult since having kids because I know have to consider the Santa Clause factor. Growing up our family didn’t believe in Santa Clause so all the rules and regulations for St. Nick are new to me. I had to have a Santa 101 class from my hubby where he promptly taught me 1. Santa gifts are not wrapped, 2. All big gifts are from Santa, 3. Parents do give gifts in addition to Santa but they are small and wrapped and mainly to supplement the Big Guy. I have gotten the hang of it pretty well but it’s a lot of work and now we have added the Elf on the Shelf and this whole fat-guy-in-the-red-suit fantasy has become a full time job!! I will admit it is fun and I think my father forbidding Santa might have been a bit extreme but there is a part of me that still struggles with this whole idea.

It seems to me that we will go to far more extremes to ensure our kids believe in Santa Clause than we will even consider doing to ensure they believe in the Big Guy that truly is real and the center of this holiday….Jesus! Sure, Santa is fun and exciting but only because we work so hard to make sure he is. We feed the fantasy for months and will climb on the roof to shake bells, sprinkle our yards with Reindeer food, call Santa, write to Santa, leave cookies and milk, all of this to be sure they believe in something that isn’t even real. How much effort to we make to teach them about a guy bigger and better than Santa that gives gifts ALL year long, truly exists and can give them life everlasting? I am not saying we need to forget about Santa but I do think there needs to be at least as much emphasis on the real hero of this season.

So as you work daily to build up the anticipation of Santa be mindful of ways that you can also teach them about the true reason we celebrate this season. Babies in mangers and wise men on camels, angels in the sky and a big bad kind named Herod all make for a pretty exciting story as well!! Read the Christmas story, make a birthday cake for Jesus, buy a neat Nativity scene and make the true story of Christmas become as real and amazing as Santa Clause….

Beth's note:
If you like Adrienne's thinking head over to this blog, Gus and Lula for even more inspiration. She has some great ideas to put the meaning back into Christmas.

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