Well we're thinking about Christmas, and it's coming up nice a quickly. How do we keep our families focussed in the right place? Our world will have us think about anything and everything other than the gospel. So what can we be doing? Well, I've got some thoughts. Check out our first Christmas post here. But here are some more things we can be thinking about.
The dangers of Santa
As Christian parents we have the dilemma of what to do with Santa. Do we embrace the concept as harmless fun for kids, or is Santa really just an anagram of Satan and we should avoid him like the plague? Here are some thoughts that might help you make up your mind on how to approach it: 1) Santa isn't real. Sorry if that's news to you. But he's not. And our kids will discover this one way or another as they grow up. One danger of us pretending as though he is real, is that when our kids discover that we have been lying to them at Christmas time, they might ponder what other things at Christmas have we made up? And the Christian message is very much considered a made-up fairytale in Aussie society. 2) Santa doesn't teach our kids to be grateful to the people who actually got them the gifts (us). 3) The naughty-nice deal that comes with Santa goes against the very heart of the Christmas message. If you are nice and not naughty, you can earn for yourself a present from Santa. Whereas the whole point of Christmas is that God gave us the gift of his Son, while we were still sinners. Santa subtly teaches salvation by works. 4) Materialism rein(deer)s with Santa. It is all about the presents, and the stuff we get. It's not about the joy of gift-giving. Our kids are more in danger of falling in love with this world than any that have come before them in history, and that's because they have so much stuff. If we give gifts to each other, we are more able to keep the focus on Jesus. We can also embrace giving and receiving more easily. Now, please don't mishear me. I'm not saying you can't do Santa. I'm not saying you're bad if you have! You may have guessed that our family has chosen not to do Santa. We tell our kids that Christmas is all about Jesus, and while other people pretend that Santa is real, we don't need to, because we have someone way better. BUT, the point of this isn't to say that doing Santa is evil or anti-Christian. The point is that we need to recognise the elements of Santa that are anti-Christian and engage with them as such. Our kids cannot get through this season without 100 random strangers asking them if they are excited for Santa. We can't just try to shelter them from Santa. What we can do, whether or not we pretend about Santa, is teach our kids that Jesus is king and he is the main point of Christmas, and that he is as real as they come.
Shh... Don't Wake The Baby
A book that is really helpful for preschoolers is Shh... Don't Wake The Baby by Helen Buckley.
What this book does, is it engages with the real-world experience of kids' Christmas, when it comes to having visitors and seeing family etc. It then shifts the focus to Jesus really helpfully. It teaches the message of Philippians 2, about how Jesus left heaven to come and save us.
Get the book here super cheap.!
There is a very fun kids Christmas song that will help your kids cruise around the house dancing with joy. It's Christmas by North Point Kids is just pure fun and celebration. Why not download it from itunes or spotify?
Some more music for parents
In the last post I gave you some chill Christmas music with tasty sounds. This time I've got some epic music for ya:
Let's help our kids be captured by what really matters this Christmas. Stay tuned for more Christmas posts over the coming weeks. Would really love to hear what you have found helpful to do at Christmas in the comments below too!
See other Christmas posts here