Christmas and Kids: What they need to know.

Christmas.  A time when we Christians celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ.  It is a time when we surround ourselves with loved ones exchanging gifts amongst the traditional Christmas tree full of lights and decorations and it is also a time to give back to others.  It’s truly a beautiful time of year.

However, this beautiful time of year can quickly turn ugly.  Excessive shopping, hurriedly running from one place to the next in search of the best deal {even if you have to fight a total stranger for it}, selfishness, jealousy, entitling children to numerous gifts from Santa, etc.  The list goes on and on.  Christmas has become so commercialized and most kids think of this holy holiday as a time of presents-lots of presents.

Our children need to know the truth about Christmas.

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Jesus Christ was born so that he could die in order to save us from our sins.  His entire life was lived in order to show God’s love and to give to others.  What an idea, huh?  Can you imagine living your life every single day in order to exude love to complete strangers while giving of yourself until you have nothing left to give but your life?  It’s powerful.

My kids, like millions of other kiddos, get presents from Santa every year. 3 actually.  While Santa is magical and allows my children’s imagination to grow, I strive to put the focus of the Christmas season on Jesus.  The joy of the season is not in presents that will be under the tree that chilly December morning, although they sure do put a smile on their sweet faces {which I love}, the joy is in knowing that years ago a King was born so that we may know eternal life.

10455034_10101248016971284_7331205198575266664_nThe joy is also in giving back through the love in our hearts.  The remembrance of God’s incredible act of love by giving His one and only Son for us should light a fire in our hearts.  I love celebrating the birth, life, and resurrection of our Savior, but I also love trying my best to help those in need.

This time of year can be a time of sorrow for families struggling to make ends meat.  Parents weighing their options to pay bills on time or get their child one simple gift.  An elderly person wondering if he’ll have enough money to buy food on Christmas day.  A child born and raised in poverty hanging their head knowing that Santa won’t make it to his house this Christmas season again while everyone else in school is joyfully leaping in excitement.  A family learning how to get by with much less after their father suddenly passed away in an automobile accident.  There are so many in need, all the time.

My boys were 8, 6, and 2 years old when we began adopting families to help during this joyous season.  We went in search of families or individuals who were in need of love, food, clothing, companionship, and/or gifts.  That first year we were able to bless one family.  The second year we adopted two families.  With each year our hearts grew in love and faith more than we could have ever imagined.  My kids were beginning to understand the true meaning of Christmas and they yearned to see the smiles on the faces of others, rather than themselves.

12341448_10101750080985974_8510366220776862003_nThe hunger in ones heart to help others is there, but often people don’t know where to start or how to go about being the hands and feet of Jesus here on Earth.  So last year I included my FaceBook friends and family to join me in blessing as many families as I could find.  I posted specific details about a few families in our community and what happened next blew me away.  Donations started pouring in, friend after friend called or messaged me asking what they could buy, local businesses bought bikes in bulk.  Parents included their children in picking out toys for children in need of a smile Christmas morning.  Children learned the wonderful feeling you get inside when you help others.

We live in a world where we put a strong focus on helping ourselves and family first and foremost.  Yes, it is important to take care of our family and treasure them, but we should remember those who are in need too.  We must never forget the ultimate sacrifice that was made so many years ago, a sacrifice of love.

This Christmas I pray you remember to teach your children what Christmas is all about. Out of gratitude for what God did for us, we remember His birth by giving each other gifts, worshipping Him, and being especially conscious of the poor and less fortunate.  Before bedtime chats, car ride to school, eating at the table, bath time–anytime is the perfect time to instill the real meaning of Christmas in your little one; it’s a gift they will remember for years to come and hopefully teach their own child one day.

Be blessed and bless others my friends.  Merry Christmas.

 

john 3 16

**If you are interested in finding a family in need in your community I encourage you to reach out to local churches, shelters, public schools, food banks…  I also encourage you to include your children and family and friends in this wonderful act of love.**

 

 

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