What to Do With Santa

(photo originally uploaded to Flickr by kevindooley)

A lot of people are worried about their kids believing that Santa is real. It’s not the story you tell at Christmas that’s going to determine their belief in Jesus. It’s the story that you tell every other day of the year with your life that makes the difference.

10 Responses to “What to Do With Santa”

  1. Dana December 11, 2010 at 11:21 am #

    For my husband and I, it’s not so much worrying about our kids losing their belief in Jesus, but how to tell the truth about Santa Claus in such a way that they don’t “spill the beans” to friends whose families chose to make Santa Claus part of their Christmas celebration. My husband and I don’t think Santa is “evil” or “wrong/bad” but 1. we don’t want to teach our kids that you receive gifts because you are “good” (opposite the gospel/grace message) and 2. we want to teach our kids to be thankful to those who truly give the gifts (whether ourselves, grandparents, or friends).

    • henryjz December 11, 2010 at 2:19 pm #

      Dana you make a good point about gift giving and receiving. I still think, though, that we can ove analyze the whole Santa thing. What we do in our lives 24/7 will have way more impact on what our children learn than worrying about how we handle Santa. When our children reach an age where they can cognitively separate fact from fiction those values that we live out daily will stick.

      • Dana December 11, 2010 at 2:45 pm #

        It is true we do over analyze things… I’ve just had too many friends share how hurt they were when they found out their parents lied:-O! Over-sensitive… maybe, but I just would rather not go there.

        • henryjz December 13, 2010 at 4:33 pm #

          Dana, Thank you again for your interaction. I guess I would be cautious as well if I had friends with those experiences. I’m glad you are following your convictions on the issue.

  2. Steve December 13, 2010 at 12:46 pm #

    I think Santa is actually a good way to teach grace. Every kid knows they have “blown it”. Every kid knows that they deserve the lump of coal in the stocking. But Santa comes through and gives them gifts anyway. That’s grace. Of course, it is a shallow picture of God’s grace. But it can provide the introduction to a great lesson on the grace of God, who offers something much more valuable than toys and games.

    • henryjz December 13, 2010 at 4:34 pm #

      I had never thought of using Santa as an object lesson like that!

  3. Barbara Graves December 17, 2010 at 8:54 am #

    Hi, Henry!
    Just an observation from my perspective, as an “older” person. : )

    I don’t know anyone personally who has ever told me they were hurt or felt betrayed by their parents for letting them believe in Santa as a kid. Not saying it doesn’t happen, but I guess because I have never had a friend that felt that way, I didn’t really worry about it while raising my kids. All 4 are adults now, and so far, it seems they are ok with me & the whole lying about Santa thing. They were just glad to get the unwrapped presents! To them, it was just a life-sized game of make believe. Much like my sons playing army in the back yard with their friends or the girls playing dress up and pretending to be brides. Just something for fun.

    Merry Christmas, Henry! Hope you and your family have a wonderful holiday and that next year is the best yet for you all!

    Certainly I can respect anyone’s decision on how to handle this with their children.

    • henryjz December 17, 2010 at 9:05 am #

      Thanks Barbara! I hope you have a wonderful Christmas as well.

      On the Santa front, I’m glad I’m not the only Christian who hasn’t met anyone who didn’t have their faith shaken or were hurt because they felt lied to.


  1. Tweets that mention What to Do With Santa | Elemental Children's Ministry -- Topsy.com - December 11, 2010

    [...] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Henry Zonio, Henry Zonio. Henry Zonio said: #kidmin What to Do With Santa http://bit.ly/gQyrtc #cmconnect #kidology [...]

  2. More Thoughts on Santa, Anyone? | Elemental Children's Ministry - December 17, 2010

    [...] Over the past couple of days I’ve come across many blog posts and tweets on opinions about Santa. Hey, I even chimed in a few days ago. [...]

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