Friday, December 20, 2013

LM presents: A Case for Santa

Since around October, I have seen various articles and posts regarding what I think my generation of parents believe is...: the Santa Crisis.  Christian parents everywhere are questioning the morality of what could be the greatest and most festive fabrication of all time; that is to say, letting your children believe in a man who climbs down the chimney to give you presents.  Of course, he only does so if you've been good enough and he's been watching the whole year!

The argument I've been hearing is that our poor misled children are too obsessed with the notion of Santa Claus and forget about the true meaning of the season.  So we must quickly snuff their whimsical fantasies of the jolly bearded St. Nicholas who can travel 'round the world in 24 hours via flying reindeer.  We better make sure they know the TRUTH about Santa and immediately or else they will end up like all the rest of us: ruined and spiritually misguided.

To the Santa naysayers, I say a resounding, "BAH HUMBUG!"

When I was a little girl, I was terrified of Santa, but I wanted nothing more than for him to stop at my house.  I left notes transcribed by my sister on my door to "leave the presents, but don't come in".  I'd lie under our Christmas tree wondering what he was to bring me this year while listening to my cassette tape of Madonna's Santa Baby. Come the night before Christmas, and all through the house not a creature was stirring, except for me.  I couldn't bear to sleep at the prospect that Santa was delivering my gifts that night!  All I could think about was Santa.  Would I hear him?  Does he know what I really want??  Bright and early (well...dark and early) Christmas morning, I was never disappointed.  Kris Kringle always got it right.  So when my dad broke the news to me at the age of nine, I was devastated.  Christmas would never be the same! 

And it wasn't the same.  It was different.  Christmas had in fact become more whole as I matured and grew up, embracing it for the true meaning, celebrating the most important birth in Bethlehem, and in the whole world. To this day, I still get very excited about presents even though I know who is really giving them, but I celebrate the Christ part.

All of this to say, I am 99.99% positive that letting your children believe in Santa does not lead to spiritual depravity.  It does not make you a bad parent because you're "lying" to them.  (As my dad put it, it's one of the greatest ruses of all time.)  Santa is a fun way to celebrate Christmas and explain how all those presents ended up in the living room. I am pro-Santa because I believe there is a way to balance his persona with Luke chapter 2.  If your kid becomes too obsessed with Santa, making him top priority, you remind them that, yes, Santa is great but Jesus is better and gave the best gift of them all.

So yes, growing up, my child's presents will definitely be from ol' Saint Nick.  Merry Christmas, everyone!

So they hurried off and found Mary and Joseph, and the baby, who was lying in the manger.  When they had seen him, they spread the word concerning what had been told them about this child, and all who heard it were amazed at what the shepherds said to them.  But Mary treasured up all these things and pondered them in her heart.
Luke 2:16-19 

1 comment:

  1. You're a great writer, Savannah! I also felt like Christmas lost some of its 'magic' once I no longer believed in Santa. And I remember Dad telling you like it was yesterday. And how you thought that he meant he was THE Santa Claus. Oh, man! That was quite a day.

    I'm so glad that we got to have our family Christmas early this year, and spend that time together.

    Love you tons, your sister who transcribed notes to Santa