The Great Santa Debate

Am I really the only one who was traumatized as a kid when I learned the cold, hard truth about Santa? Honestly, I was devastated. I couldn’t believe I had been so gullible and that my family, friends and teachers all conspired against me. As a result, I never carried forth the Santa tradition with my son. When I tell people this I’m often met with wide eyes and gasps of horror. They say, “how could you rob your child of the Christmas magic?”

Here are four reasons why I believe the TRUTH is so much more magical than Mr. Claus.

HIS LOVE

Santa and Me

My brother and I sitting on the lap of a very creepy looking Santa.

We’re taught at a very early age that being naughty or nice determines what gifts Santa will bring. Even just talking to him can be an intimidating experience for many of us. (See the photo of my brother and I with Santa). Does he really look like the kind of man you want your kids to develop an intimate relationship with?

To the contrary, Christ doesn’t give according to our behavior. He gives freely to all who believe. His love is unconditional and He wants to bless us with peace, joy, freedom and eternal life.

For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast. For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.Ephesians 2:8-10

HIS POWER

Santa’s power is limited. Sure, he can fly a sleigh with the aid of eight tiny reindeer. And somehow he manages to squeeze his gluttonous body down every chimney in the world in a single night. That’s pretty remarkable, I agree.

However, Christ can walk on water and heal the sick. He can even raise the dead back to life! Not to mention, He created the entire Universe, which is far bigger than we can even imagine. That’s pretty awesome!

“And what is the immeasurable greatness of his power toward us who believe, according to the working of his great might that he worked in Christ when he raised him from the dead and seated him at his right hand in the heavenly places, far above all rule and authority and power and dominion, and above every name that is named, not only in this age but also in the one to come.Ephesians 1:19-21

HIS PRESENTS

Santa’s gifts are temporal and oftentimes costly. Many of them are even tied to debt. Greed and jealously run rampant as we clamor for more and more toys…many of which end up broken or hardly even played with.

Gifts from Christ are eternal and transformative. First, He forgives all our wretched sins and transforms us with incredible power. He gives our life purpose and frees us from bondage and fear. He also gives us the hope of eternal life. He is an awesome provider because He owns EVERYTHING!

“And my God will supply every need of yours according to his riches in glory in Christ Jesus.” Philippians 4:19

HIS PRESENCE

Santa only comes to see us once a year. If you’re really determined to foster a relationship you might need to take a painfully long road trip to search for the old man’s hiding place at the North Pole. Good luck with that.

Christ is always with us. He’ll never forsake us. He wants a personal relationship with us so much He came to earth just to prove it.

“For God so loved the world, that He gave His only son. Whoever believes in Him should not perish but have eternal life.” John 3:16

So, how is some guy at the mall in a fake beard and red suit more magical than the everlasting master of the universe? I mean, really?

If you want to create truly memorable experiences for your child, tell them about Jesus. Read about His miracles together. Proclaim His promises. Remind them that the birth of Christ paved a way for their lives to be full of purpose…forever and ever and ever. THAT, my friends, is worth celebrating!

Merry Christmas!

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7 thoughts on “The Great Santa Debate

  1. I have a 11 month old and have been debating this. How did you do it? What did you tell yours about Santa, presents, etc? What did they say to people when asked what they wanted from Santa? Did they spoil it for other kids? Do you ever regret not letting them have the fantasy experience? I am just conflicted…and need to make up my mind by next christmas. Thanks! Paula

    • Hey Paula. I told my son the story of Santa Claus. We even watched Christmas shows on TV about him. I just emphasized that Santa was fictional and the truth was Jesus. I told him a lot of families like to pretend Santa is real while the kids are growing up. I asked him to be sensitive towards his friends and not make fun of anybody for believing in Santa because their parents would tell them the truth themselves. To my knowledge, I don’t think he ever spoiled it for anybody. It was just a part of our regular dialog around Christmas every year. The goal was not to bash Santa, but to make sure he could distinguish the truth and know where to place his faith.