Our hearts grow tender with childhood memories and love of kindred, and we are better throughout the year for having, in spirit, become a child again at Christmas-time.
~Laura Ingalls Wilder
My last post highlighted the birth of Jesus and mentioned that, along with Christ’s Mass, many people celebrate the season with other traditions as well. These traditions are woven into the fabric of the holiday and bring added joy and good feelings to the season. We all have childhood memories associated with holidays, and many of those memories probably center around that jolly, round person affectionately called Santa.
As an admitted Santa collector, I have about every size and shape Santa Claus, St. Nicholas, Old St. Nick, Father Christmas and Kris Kringle you can imagine. For me, Santa and the other secular Christmas traditions in no way detract from the main event in Bethlehem that changed the world so many centuries ago. Santa in no way represents Christmas at the expense of Christ. True Christians hold Christmas in their hearts all year, regardless of the calendar page. But like the holly, mistletoe, garland greenery, twinkling lights and gift giving of the designated holiday season, Santa is just another tradition that serves a larger purpose in lifting the spirits of children of all ages. Call it a bit of fun, Christmas magic.
From childhood, Santa has always been a representative of the divine concepts of generosity, compassion and kindness. But, in addition to Santa, there’s a huge supporting cast surrounding his once-a-year joy ride. Because, without those “elves,” there’s no way Santa could make all those toys to gladden the hearts of little girls and boys! 😉
One of those elves appears at our house during December. Peanut named her Wendy. Her arrival means summaries are periodically sent back to Santa so he knows whether she’s on the Naughty or Nice list. But…as with all of us….Wendy isn’t without a little mischievousness of her own.
The experience of child-like wonder makes the holidays enjoyable for both adults and children alike. We will teach Peanut and Twix many lessons about generosity, love and grace throughout their lives. And, we’ll throw in a bit of Christmas magic just for fun.
The original story of St. Nicholas is one of a humble Christian bishop who loved God. He displayed this love by giving to others….not unlike our Heavenly Father who gave the world the gift of his son, Jesus, more than 2,000 years ago. Regardless of whatever name he’s called, his message is always the same. Love.
May your days be merry and bright this Christmas and throughout the new year.
Participating in LTTL and Quotography