Christian Living


Mommy and the Joyful Three 12/07/10

The Real Hero of the Holiday

My oldest daughter, Sage, recently asked me, ‘what is your favorite part of Christmas?” I automatically said, Christmas Trees, twinkling lights, peppermint candy canes. My list grew even longer before I realized what I was omitting. A huge pang of guilt hit me, as I recognized I failed to mention the Reason we celebrate. The true wonder and majesty of this holiday is Jesus Christ.

I explained to Sage that my list of favorite things only included superficial joys of the holiday season. Beyond the bright lights, commercial distractions, and seasonal characters (Santa, his reindeer and elves), we should reflect upon and honor our Savior, Jesus Christ.

Sage knows Christmas is a special time set aside to celebrate Jesus’ birth. Sadly, she could give you directions to the North Pole before she could place Bethlehem on a map. And unfortunately, her first thoughts of Christmas may be like mine – that of superficial possessions and celebrations. It gets to be a problem when our children first think of the man in the Red Suit as the symbol of the season.

In many ways, Jesus has been over shadowed by Santa Claus during the holiday season. Jolly Old St. Nick has it all – gifts, he’s a symbol of hope, and is larger than life. As parents, we need to share with our children that belief in Santa will leave them feeling unfulfilled compared to the real promise and gifts Jesus offers.

It’s not hard to get caught up in the holiday craziness. Just like at a child’s birthday party, sometimes it’s more about the games and goody bags than the birthday boy. It is important that we remember to teach our children to be gracious and proud to celebrate our Lord’s birthday.

This year, my children and I made a gingerbread manger together. It gave me the opportunity to share the Christmas story with them in a fun and interactive way. The kids loved making it; and they were excited to hear about the birth of Jesus.

Make this season more about Jesus and less about holiday distractions. To make sure that happens in my family, we are going to enjoy Christmas as we have before, but with more of a focus on Christ. Be careful not to get caught up in the shopping and planning this year. Jesus loves His people to be full of cheer. He wants us to have fun and enjoy this season, but we should never forget why we are here or why we are rejoicing this Christmas.

Just as our Lord entered our world in a humble manner, we need to humble ourselves when we come before Him. Put down your wish list, your shopping bags, and take time to remember what this season should be about. Praise His name for the gifts He gives us all year. Santa can have his month. But as for my family, we will celebrate the greatest gift God ever gave us, His one and only Son.
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