Friday, December 18, 2015

Why We've Chosen to Tell Our Children Santa Is Pretend.

My three year old is Elsa obsessed. Elsa could easily become the most important figure in her life. Although we have zero issues with our daughter's liking for this character, we constantly remind her that she's pretend. Otherwise, for example, the snow outside is credited to "Elsa's icy powers!"

That is the very last thing we want for our household.

If we allowed her to think that the snow outside really was Elsa's icy powers, we'd take away from the true source of that snow: God Himself. 
"By the breath of God ice is given, and the broad waters are frozen fast. He loads the thick clouds with moisture; the clouds scatter his lightning.They turn around and around by his guidance, to accomplish all that he commands them on the face of the habitable world.Whether for correction or for his land or for love, he causes it to happen." (Job 37:10-13) 
This is one example of God's sovereignty over weather, including ice and snow. We tell Brielle, all the time, that Elsa is pretend, but God - He's real - and so are His icy powers!

The same goes for Santa. During Christmas our central focus is Christ and the reason He came to earth as a babe. We have zero issues for our daughter's liking for Santa (in fact, she's told me on many occasions this Christmas season that she wants to be Santa for Halloween next year), but we are always reminding her that he's pretend. Otherwise the presents under the Christmas tree are credited to Santa, when in reality the earth and everything in it belongs to God. I often tell Brielle that Christmas is the time we celebrate Jesus' birthday and He is so kind and generous to give us presents on His day! (She likes that explanation, go figure.) But let me back that up with one example from Scripture. David understood this truth so well in his prayer after Israel made their freewill offerings so the temple could be built by Solomon, David's son,
"Blessed are you, O Lord, the God of Israel our father, forever and ever. Yours, O Lord, is the greatness and the power and the glory and the victory and the majesty, for all that is in the heavens and in the earth is yours. Yours is the kingdom, O Lord, and you are exalted as head above all. Both riches and honor come from you, and you rule over all. ... But who am I, and what is my people, that we should be able thus to offer willingly? For all things come from you, and of your own have we given you." (1 Chronicles 29:1-12 & 14, bolded mine)
In other words, David recognized that what Israel was giving was God's to begin with; they were simply giving back what's His. We try to recognize this truth in our own lives, with all our possessions. They are His, even those presents under the tree HE has blessed us with and we need to give thanks and glory and honor to Him for all that He gives (including the means to buy those gifts under the tree). We do not want to take the glory away from God by giving credit to Santa. We will not trade what's incredibly real for a fantasy.

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