A couple of years ago I wrote an article here on my blog and in K! on “Developing A Biblical Word View in your Family” In that article I wrote:
Julie and I both grew up in Christian households. Both of our families attended church on a regular basis. Our parents also told us both about the tooth fairy, the Easter Bunny and Santa Claus. We also both grew up watching all the disney “fairytale movies and reading traditional children’s books. When Julie and I found out that our parents were really “Santa Claus, the Easter Bunny, and the tooth fairy it affected us differently. Julie just kind of went along as long as her parents wanted to play the game. I felt betrayed. It also made me question was Jesus real too or did they make Him up too?
One thing Julie and I knew was we wanted to do whatever we could to help our kids know the difference between fiction and truth.
But the most controversial decision we ever made was to say say no to Ho Ho Ho!
We never told our girls their Christmas presents came from the north pole or that they where made by elves. We told them the stories as stories not as truth. The truth was their presents came from Mom and Dad with love bought with money Father God provided to us because He loves His kids and wants us to love ours. We told our children that Father God started the whole gift giving tradition by giving the first Christmas present His one and only son. I don’t think our girls could have been more excited about Christmas than they were growing up. They went to bed wondering what Mom and Dad were going to give them in the same way other kids were excited about presents from Santa. The funny thing that would happen was when adults would ask Yancy what Santa was going to bring her she would answer nothing. Those adults would look at use like we were the worst parents in the world. I’ll be honest with you at first I was guilty of being somewhat of a Santa basher. Some of you might have heard a song I wrote for an early Puppet Trax tape that said “Santa Claus never died for anybody’s sin and the Easter Bunny never rose again.” I remember walking through the mall around Christmas time and saw a mall Santa. I remember saying something about there he is the God of this world and I remember Yancy as a very little girl saying Dad it’s just a man in a suit like your gorilla suits. After that I just took a chill pill I had done what we wanted to do we had taught our girls the difference between truth and fantasy.
I have no regrets for telling my kids the truth. They still look forward to Christmas and seeing what they are going to get from Mom and Dad but greater than that they know the reason for the season that God’s son became a man and dwelt among us!