Sunday, August 15, 2010

The Great Debate

The good:  Today Cavett completed his masterpiece book he's been working on all summer long.  We took the Psalty the Songbook Song "I'm Gonna Hide God's Word in My Heart," and illustrated it.  It was great fun and a learning experience delving into figuring out what all those verses really mean.  You can get a good preview from the above demo and even order your own copy if you are interested. 

The bad:  Sunday School today was a disaster.  Somewhere in the course of the class there was discussion of Santa Claus.  How this even happens, I'm only guessing that it went something like, "Are y'all ready for school to start"...Halloween, Thanksgiving, and then Christmas.  It's all "He said, She said", but here's what I learned from a conversation with the teacher afterwards. 

Cavett proceeds to tell the class of first graders and Kindergartners that there is no Santa Claus and that it's really the Mommy's and Daddy's that get up in the middle of the night and give you the presents.  While he has it right, he was chastised for his beliefs and the teacher was disappointed that he had ruined it for her daughter that was in the class as well as everyone else.  Turns out these might be fairly tough kids and they took him on for a 15 minute debate.  The teacher was in the end empathetic toward Cavett in that she seemed to think that he took it  very personally and felt that no one was listening to him.   But, she also emphasized the fact that we needed to have a lengthy discussion about how we need to teach him that we shouldn't ruin it for other kids (which I thought we had covered already.)

I kind of feel bad, but at the same time, not really.  It's such a convoluted subject.  The very idea of Santa Claus is well and good in that he was a man that cared more for others than himself, but what we have turned him into and how commercialized the entire season is disgusting. 

How can we have our kids believe that Santa Claus is still around today doing this for kids, and later in life turn around and say it is false.  It's just the opposite of what we want our kids to believe about our Saviour!  Not to mention the fact that Santa Claus isn't at all fair, in that poor kids don't get what the rich kids get.  

Shouldn't we stand up for what we believe, especially in church? Call me Scrooge, but I'd rather see my children singing "Happy Birthday to Jesus," and being thankful for what God has provided our family with and sharing with others than making out wish lists, bribing them to be on the "good list" for one month a year and gloating over all that "Santa" brought them.  I wish to instill a love of their Lord and celebrate his birth rather than focus on the commercialism of Christmas. 

This is the my main job as a parent-lead them spiritually. 

Don't get me wrong, it's all fine if YOU want to do it, and we still enjoy some of the "fun" of the Advent season.  But this is how we roll.  I'm very sorry if my child spoiled it for your child and you have to answer some tough questions to keep them believing until they are 21.  But try emphasizing that all things come from God, no matter who gives them to you. 


Elaine said...

ugh, that's a tough one. A colleague's daughter once asked her why they were participating in one of those angel tree charities at Christmas since Santa should be able to bring all the kids what they need/want. Fair point, I thought.

Anonymous said...

I raised Atley to not believe in the Santa Claus fairytale and taught her the true Biblical meaning of Christmas instead. She is neither scarred for life or in need of major therapy as a result.

She is also one of the most generous people I know. Especially in a church setting, don't back down on your values to appease the masses. That's not what the Bible teaches us to do anyway.

My 2 cents :)