Clarifying Christmas

13 12 2013

A few years backJesus-Christ, I spoke on the importance of keeping Christ the center of Christmas, and on the way home from that service, a young mom, convinced that her children understood that Christmas was about Jesus, decided to give her kids a test.

“What is Christmas all about?” She asked her buckled up kiddos.

“SANTA!” they exclaimed in unison.

Although that mom might have been surprised by her children’s answer, it shouldn’t surprise us.  In our culture today, Christmas has become about trees and decorations, ornaments and lights, parties and cantatas, Christmas letters and picture cards, presents and cookies and Santa and Frosty and Elves and Rudolf and Charlie Brown and movies and traditions and carols and stockings and hayrides and gift exchanges and about a thousand other things that have simply become the norm of the season.

And if you do succeed in helping your kids see the true meaning of Christmas, and they say anything to their peers (“Santa’s not real… Christmas is about Jesus”), you have angry parents and teachers calling you to tell you how you’re a terrible parent and that your child has destroyed Christmas for everyone!

Is it possible that, in our effort to make Christmas meaningful and special, we have actually robbed Christmas of its real meaning and purpose?

As parents, one of our greatest responsibilities is to help clarify things for our kids.  Our kids are looking at us, at our lives, and at what we invest ourselves in to determine what’s important, and this means we have to make things more simple, not more complex.

So maybe we need to let go of some things for the sake of our kids and for the sake of clarity this Christmas.  Maybe Santa needs to take a hike so that Jesus can become the real star of the day.  Maybe Rudolf needs to have a year off so that Christ can be this years main attraction.  Maybe, just maybe, we need to courageously re-think the way we do Christmas, so that Christ isn’t just a sidelight this Christmas, but the real, and easy to see, reason for the season.

May we all see Christ more clearly this Christmas Season!


Question:  What things are you doing this year that would confuse your kids about what Christmas is really all about?  What are you doing this year to make Jesus stand out above all the other stuff?