• A is for Agape

Santa, Baby Jesus and Rolling Eyes


From the back seat, “Is Jesus more important at Christmas?”  Oh, my, teach me patience during the holidays.  There are still twenty eight days to go.  I shake my head in a prelude to my standard rant on the meaning of Christmas, paganism, brotherly love and the general state of consumerism today, when I hear, “I’m just joking.”

My son does this to me regularly, gives me mild cardiac infarctions.  He giggles and continues playing Bejeweled on my iPad.  He tells me he’s at his new highest score, as if we’ve moved on from his previous statement.  Oh, no!  He may have been joking but he brought up the subject so he’s getting the lecture, even if it is a revised, condensed version.

So, now that we’re on the subject they both get to hear it, my darling girl and my cheeky boy.  I begin with asking them the ultimate question, why do we celebrate this particular holiday.  With a loud sigh they answer in unison, “because Jesus was born.”  We’re off to a good start but I’m not letting them off quite that easily.  They know about the baby, but do they know about the big fat guy in the floppy hat and his involvement in this story.

I proceed to question them on this point, “Do you guys know why we decorate with a tree, sparkly lights, do you know why we added a silly man and little elves?”  The kids just roll their eyes, I can feel them doing it from the back seat.  This special ability comes from my side of the family so I can sense it before their eyes even come to rest.

I tell them that these are man made inventions, pretty, decorative inventions.  They have nothing to do with Jesus.  Yes, every year we buy the tree, decorate the house with twinkly lights.  It’s fun to open the red bins, remembering the colorful decorations we use every year, setting everything up just so.  But that’s all it is, festive decor and lovely things.

I tell them that if anything at all, they should only be reminders of a very special day long ago when a man became a baby, lay down humbly in hay and grew up to die for every one of us.  It was the very opposite of the dazzle we use to celebrate this glorious occasion today.  But if that’s what it takes to wake up the world once a year, well, let’s do our part and hang some lights.  And, in typical mom fashion, I have to add, “It’s not all about the presents either.”  I’m pretty sure they rolled their eyes again.

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