I didnt sleep well last night and while lying around I started thinking about none other than the jolly old elf himself....Santa Claus. You see I don't remember ever believing in santa, although many kids I know did. As an adult, we've had fun with Santa with my nephews. But the fact remains, there is no Santa. We have our children write letters to him, leave him cookies, and makes requests, hoping on Christmas morning to find a tree spewing forth all of their wants and wishes. And while it can be fun, I question it as this season we are faced with the reality that if we start he Santa thing it is ours for years yo come, until that day when we have to look Emily in the eye and say, "yes sweetheart we have been lying to you about Santa now for your entire life. That guy in the red suit you saw at Bass pro doesnt live at the north pole, he probably lives just down the street." Ok, so there lies problem number one....we asked our children to believe in something with their whole hearts only to crush there sense of faith whenever they are old enough to realize Santa just won't work." But lets say they come to this conclusion at the age of 8. Slowly losing that innocence, we swipe a security blanket out from under them. Meanwhile we've also been teaching them all about God, how to pray, and the story of the nativity and christ dying for us. Do you know an 8 year old? If you disspell the Santa myth, isn't it going to make them question the very roots of their faith....in the important things? Each night as Emily lays down to sleep, we talk to God. Mostly she repeats after me, but she's learning about this awesome God of ours, how he cares about even the smallest little detail in our lives, down to the number of hairs on our heads. Whythen do we feel as though we must attempt to make our children believe in something that will subsequentl break their hearts when they learn the truth? I wan Emily to enjoy the holidays, and the "fun" part of Santa, but more importantly I want her to know how to give and share, not so much to receive.
Which brings me to my next train of thought. As you probably know I enjoy following Ana White's blog. She has great woodworking plans on sher site that she graciously shares for FREE! She had a great idea this holiday...and has issued a challenge to all her readers which I'm passing on to you...the challenge. Make something homemade this Christmas for someone you love. But don't stop there. Make another identical item (twice the product..but not really twice the work since you'll be using all the same tools/supplies) . Donate your extra item to someone in need, whether it be a family you know to be struggling this Christmas, or through an organized charity. For those of you near Joplin....finding a recipient won't be hard I'm sure. For those of you in the Kansas City area, I don't know who all accepts homemade gifts however, Emily and I will be delivering our homemade rag doll to Children's Mercy. They sounded very excited about the prospect of getting homemade cuddly donations. So will you, join me in accepting the challenge?