What If Santa Didn’t Show Up?

Christmas is all about Jesus’ birth.  Yet, Santa seems to be the star of the show.  Santa is delightful.  He’s fat and jolly, sweet and giving.  We take pictures with him throughout December.  He shows up on wrapping paper, holiday cards, ornaments, decorations, in the stores, and more.  He’s everywhere.  So why not carry on the tradition of Santa?

Traditional Santa Claus3

My Confession

Yesterday morning I went to the doctor’s office with our 2-year-old daughter for my prenatal check up.  No one was in the waiting room with us except for the receptionist.  The receptionist began talking to Emma and asking her about Christmas.  She asked Emma what she wanted for Christmas.  Emma stared at her with a blank look.  I smiled, not knowing where this conversation would lead.  Then the lady asked her what she asked Santa for.  Emma looked straight back at her and didn’t say a word.

I felt really bad but I nicely chimed in and said, “We actually don’t ask Santa for anything.  We give Jesus a gift instead.”  The lady was extremely curious and said, “Yes, because Christmas is all about Jesus.”  Wonderful!  She was apparently on the same page.  We went on to have a delightful discussion about what we do as a family and why.

Before you decide to hate on this post, just hear me out.  I promise that the last thing I want to do is ruin Christmas for anyone.  I want the very best for you and your family this Christmas, and this next year!  Therefore, I have a proposition for you:

What if Santa didn’t show up this year in your home? (Keep reading…)

As I sat on my couch this morning studying the Bible and chatting with God, I kept looking at the stockings on our chimney.  I wondered, “what if others caught onto this radical concept and shifted their Christmas this year…?”  So with that being said, I’ve decided to share with you what we do for “stockings” and “Christmas.”

Our Family Decision About Santa

For Emma’s first Christmas, Robert and I made the decision that we would not give gifts to Emma from Santa.  Even though we had both been raised in homes where Santa surprised us with gifts, we decided not to teach our children that someone other than God is the source of gift giving and blessings.  Robert and I each had our different reasons, but they both said “no” to Santa and “yes” to Jesus.

How It Looks

This is the first year that Emma will comprehend the “stocking” and “Santa” thing so we’ll see how it goes:

1) We hang stockings on our chimney.  We don’t want our house to take away from the holiday festivities, we want to add to it.  So we still hang up stockings but for a different reason.

2) Above the chimney are framed signs that say “Our stockings are stuffed with gifts for Jesus.”  Up until Christmas Eve, we have asked Emma to gather gifts to give to Jesus.  What does she have in there so far?  Well, an empty envelope that she colored, one of her white socks, a rubber band ball, a few coins, and a golf ball (keep in mind…she’s only two).


3) We placed the scripture found in Matthew 2:11 in the picture frames.  It says “On coming to the house, they [the wise men] saw the child with his mother Mary, and they bowed down and worshiped him [Jesus].  Then they opened their treasures and presented him with gifts…”

On Christmas Eve, we will ask Emma to select one of her toys and gift it to Jesus (by giving it to someone else) that evening.  We will wrap it with her and get it all ready to give away.

4) Christmas morning.  On Christmas morning Emma will be gifted with a gift in her stocking but not from Santa.  She will get a gift from God.  The scripture says in Luke 6:38 “Give and it will be given to you.  A good measure, pressed down, shaken together and running over, will be poured into your lap.”  Whew!  What a promise!

We seek God to see what He wants to give her.  This year, the Lord put it on my heart to gift her with a doctor’s toy set.  We will tell her that we bought it for her but God gave told us to give it to her.  We will explain to her that just like a doctor can help you get better, Jesus can heal you completely.


Why Do This?

First of all, we are not doing this because we are “super Christians.”  That’s not our heart at all.  Nor do we judge people who have the Santa Claus tradition.  We are doing this because we want the only source of faith gift giving (meaning from someone who she cannot see) to be from her Father in heaven.  He not only gives gifts on Christmas but every single day of the year!  We want to create an atmosphere in her heart that says “I can ask Jesus for anything and God can give it.”

When I see children write to Santa asking for their parents to get back together, for their home to not be given away, or for their mommy or daddy to get a job, it breaks my heart.  Santa can’t do anything but Jesus can do anything and everything!  God can out give any parent pretending to be Santa.

What If Santa Didn’t Show Up For Your Kids This Year?

My proposition and challenge to you is this:  Ask the Lord what He wants to give your children this year.  Ask Him for the gift that He would like to bless them with.  Then go out and buy it, make it, or create it.  On Christmas morning, give the gift from God instead of Santa.  You don’t need to tell them that Santa’s not real but what if he didn’t show up?  Could you handle your child(ren) being disappointed by Santa?

John 14:13-14 says “I will do whatever you ask in my [Jesus’] name, so that the Son may bring glory to the Father.  You may ask me for ANYTHING in my name, and I will do it.”

John 15:7 says “If you remain in me and my words remain in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be given you.”

Can you trust what Jesus is saying here?  Yes!  Isaiah 55:11 says “So is my word that goes out from my mouth: It will not return to me empty.”  God fulfills His word.

Let’s shift our Christmas this year and bring about a gift of radical faith to our children.  Knock their socks off this Christmas!  Give God the glory and credit.

Santa, we love you, but not more than Cinderella, Gus Gus, Elmo, or Winnie the Pooh.  God is our gift giver and provider!  In fact, go ahead and ask God for something radical for you too!  He would love to bless you this next year!

Question: What does your family do for Jesus?  Share with us the ideas of how to magnify the Lord in our home this Christmas.

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  1. I love this idea! I grew up Catholic and with Santa but as an adult I’m ambivalent about the small, fun fibs we tell children. Through your tradition you’re focusing on all the true meanings of Christmas.

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