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God has blessed me tremendously with an amazing husband, Doug, and two gorgeous little boys, Gavin and Joey. It has always been a dream of mine to have a large family but God may have other plans. I had a series of 6 consecutive early miscarriages when trying for baby #2. We are currently trying for baby #3 after our 7th miscarriage. I am faithful that God's plan is perfect, even when I am not happy about it. I love comments and meeting new followers so please don't be shy!

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Thursday, October 20, 2011

Do Your Kids Trust You?

As the holidays approach I am getting ideas for gifts and already getting excited about the fun things that Christmas entails.  The one thing I am not looking forward to is the inevitable questions and comments from the general public (but most often cashiers) directed at my children.  In some form or another they ask, "Are you ready for Santa to come?"  or sometimes it is, "What did you ask Santa for this year?"  Harmless right?  This is where you might start to think we are crazy.  Get ready for this...

We aren't doing the Santa thing.  Totally skipping it.  Completely.  When Doug first brought this up I thought he was quite possibly the meanest dad in the world!  I mean, is he the real life version of the Grinch?  Why should kids miss out on this age old fun tradition of believing!  Then, after more discussion, I understood his reasoning. Not only did I understand it, I agreed.  Hello.  My name is Mrs. Grinch. 

This post is not intended to ruin Christmas for children all over the world.  That isn't my goal.  I just want you to better understand why we aren't going to play the Santa game and why I think you should be cautious when reading "'Twas the Night Before Christmas" this year.

As parents, it is our responsibility to teach our children about God.  We read stories about God.  We pray to God each night before bed or at dinner and thank Him and ask Him for things.  We teach about God whenever we can.  We remind our children that God wants us to do good things not bad.  Then November comes and we read books about Santa.  We ask Santa for things either in person or in writing.  And we love the opportunity to warn our kids that Santa won't bring presents if we are naughty instead of nice. See the similarities?

Then, one day, the fantastic months of good behavior prior to Christmas come to an abrupt stop.  That is the day that our little Christmas Elf comes home from school with a slightly tear stained face and a broken heart.  "Johnny up the road told me that Santa isn't real.  He told me everything.  He told me that you and Dad are the ones that put the presents under the tree.  I am going to my room."

As most parents have, you have planned how to handle that sad day.  Whether you have chosen to explain it as a fun game that he will play one day with his/her children , or that Santa is a symbol of love, or some other attempt at smoothing things over, the bottom line is that your kid will have discovered that you spent the first 8 (or so) years of their life lying to them.

Maybe they won't hold a grudge.  It wasn't like I consciously was angry at my parents for lying to me when I was growing up.  But there is something a little more important going on here.  All of the sudden kids realize, "If my parents can lie to me about Santa for 8 years then what about all of the other things that they have told me.  And now they want me to believe that this God character exists too?  Not a chance.  Fool me once.  Shame on you!  Fool me twice?  Not gonna happen.  You can keep telling me the stories but, I've learned my lesson." 

 I do not want my kids to ever think they cannot trust me.  For us, we have decided that our kids trusting us and having faith in our Father, is a much higher priority than playing a very elaborate game of "Let's Pretend."  Santa is a pretty fun dude and is full of cheerful traditions but none of that is as important to us as risking our children not getting to spend their eternity with Our Creator. 

We will be explaining to Gavin (and Joey someday) that other kids and families like to pretend that Santa Claus comes and bring presents on Christmas.  If he want's to play pretend with them, that is fine but if he chooses not to, just find something else to talk about or play with.  Don't ruin their game of pretend.  I will try to do everything in my power to make sure that my kids are not the "Johnnies up the road."

What do you think?  Are we crazy?


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