Its Christmas time again and Santa has made his presence known across many facets of our daily lives once more.
When I was without children, and even as I held my first young baby I was quite convinced that our family would make Christmas about Christ and just about Christ. Santa would have no room to fit in the truth we lived.
And then the baby grew into a child. He became a little boy who saw and heard of Santa, because it’s the culture we’ve been placed into.
And I saw wonder in his spirit. I saw hope and excitement in his eyes. We told him about Jesus and the magic of his birth- yet he somehow understood the wonder of a nice old man flying in a sleigh pulled by magic reindeer all around the world to bring hope and gifts to everyone- more than the wonder of our great God coming down to our sinful word to give us salvation.
And well, I let him believe.
Every year I think about it, I wonder if I’m lying to my children. Yet I haven’t had it in me to break the news. This year I finally feel as though I have words to give, and perhaps even some wisdom on this predicament.
Approaching parenting issues this year, having a new sense of Gods grace after coming through a particularly dark season, I find myself asking, “how does God parent me?”
Well, I know in my walk with Him, God has allowed me to believe some pretty silly things. Perhaps he saw my passion, my drive, my blind faith…and he liked it. Maybe he didn’t love what my focus was, but he loved my heart. He liked me looking and feeling alive, He liked me believing.
Did God lie to me when I believed untruths? By no means! He could never! But while I looked to him and whole heartedly loved him… I stumbled and committed myself to untruths.
I grew, and when then time came for me to look at my Father and ask him straight up- when I was mature enough to see the real truth; He gently guided me into it and revealed to me my wrong beliefs. Of course using all things for my good and for his glory.
Our family centers our Christmas on Christ-and give gifts to each other to celebrate Gods miraculous gift of salvation.
But when my boys want to leave cookies and milk out for Santa, we will. And I’ll be sure Dave takes some good bites and makes it look real. I will support my children as they believe in Santa. As they practice what it means to have faith and believe.
When the time comes…when they mature enough to truly see just what and who Santa really is, I will be gentle. I will declare truth and trust God to guide and show each one of them who HE really is.