Recently I have been asked repeatedly how can we, as Christian parents, reconcile the secular Santa Claus with the birth of Jesus.
That my friends is a big, big question, that I hardly have the answers to.
It is not a debate that I want to engage in to either.
Do my kids excitedly meet Santa?
Do they ask him to bring them something?
Do they think that he is the reason for Christmas?
No more than Mickey Mouse is the reason for Disneyland.
Do they believe in him?
Just like they believe in Star Wars, unicorns, fairy tales, Narnia, and princesses.
Do I think that their rich imaginations are going to be a stumbling block to their relationship with God?
I sure hope not.
I often wonder if imagination is the beginning of faith.
Besides, what is bigger than the imagination of the Creator of the Universe?
What I do know, is Santa is not the focus of the season in our family.
There is a nativity set in nearly every room of the house.
We read the Christmas story together. We sing carols as we drive around looking at lights each night.
They give away many more toys than they will receive under the tree come Christmas morning.
We then cap off the season with a huge birthday party for Jesus, complete with cake, decorations and balloons.
Yes. Santa is part of the story.
But he is not the whole story.
The story to us is grace, hope, love, giving, and celebration.
We pray that is the part of the story that they will carry with them.
Because it is such a beautiful, beautiful story.
God's grace came down in all humility, bringing us good news of great joy.
Hallelujah. Amen and amen.