I remember the exact date: October 2, 2009. My son was 7 years old at the time and he came off that bus with a look of confusion, drowning in a sea of despair. I threw him a life preserver with the typical mom question, "What's wrong, honey? Come on, you can tell me anything," I pleaded. Without hesitation he calmly asked, "Mommy, is there really a Santa Claus?" WHAT?! Where did this come from? Whose parent was I going to call?
|This is the ornament we chose to represent that year.|
I had to think fast so I recited the typical speech many of us rub into our children's emotional wounds of dreams gone by. You know the speech. It's the one that talks about Christmas as a feeling, the Christmas spirit, a believing of peace on Earth, goodwill toward men. Yes, all true; to a seven year-old, mumbo jumbo. My son patiently stared blankly at my fumbling explanation and replied, "Listen, I just want to know. Do any of my gifts come from a guy in a red suit that comes down the chimney and eats my cookies, drinks my milk, and leaves on a sled pulled by flying reindeer?" My heart fell to my feet, I could see a sliver of innocence fleeing from my child's eyes. "No, no," I muttered, barely audible to the human ear.
As most seven year-old boys do, my son shrugged it off rather matter-of-factly, stated he "thought so" and went on his merry way. He wasn't phased at all. He still gets presents from "Santa" every year, but it's tongue-in-cheek I'm afraid.
Fast-forward 2 years later. I had a revelation this holiday season. It's one of those things you wish you thought of on October 2, 2009, but didn't. Perhaps you've unraveled the same mystery and I'm just a little slow on the up-take. It finally hit me. I finally made the connection while listening to the 24/7 Christmas music on the radio. I know Santa Claus is a pagan character so I'm hoping my revelation doesn't cause upset. I hope no one takes offense to the following statement as I do have facts to back it up, so hear me out. What if, just what if, Santa Claus is Jesus, himself?
|This is our family's nativity scene, made from paper mache.|
1. "Ask and you shall receive." - have we not stood in lines hours on end to ask Santa for our deepest desires for Christmas?
2. Jesus was a carpenter. Isn't Santa the head elf whose primary profession is woodworking toys?
3. Santa absolutely loves children. Jesus had this same devotion to children and even told adults to "come to Him like a child."
4. Santa spreads joy and happiness around the entire world and works miracles, GIVING people what they desire, all in one night! Sounds like Jesus worked a few miracles Himself, and spread the Word of love.
5. Santa comes bearing gifts to all good little girls and boys. Have you heard of the Fruit of the Spirit? Love, Joy, Peace, Patience, Kindness, Goodness, Faithfulness, Gentleness, Self-Control - all gifts given to us that gifts us a life worth living.
OK, still not convinced? Let's turn to some Christmas songs...
5. Santa Claus is Coming to Town..."He sees you when you're sleeping, he know when you're awake. He knows if you've been bad or good, so be good for goodness sake." Sound like Someone we know, the All-Knowing?
6. Here Comes Santa Claus is the most blatant..."He doesn't care if you're rich or poor, he loves you just the same. Santa Claus knows we're all God's children, that makes everything right...Peace on Earth will come to all if we just follow the light. So let's give thanks to the Lord above that Santa Claus comes tonight."
Trust me, I think you know me well-enough by now to know I mean no offense in comparing Santa Claus and Jesus to be one in the same. I would like to point out that if you celebrate Christmas, you are, in fact, celebrating the birth of Jesus Christ. It's not about the food or the presents. The comparison was a revelation that hit me like a ton of bricks and if Santa Claus represents Jesus in our house, then that truly is something to BELIEVE in.
Can you think of any Christmas songs that may suggest the same premise?