The other day I read a letter from a mom to parents everywhere. The letter requested that parents not give their children expensive gifts in the name of Santa Claus. She asked that if parents felt the need to give their children expensive gifts at Christmas time that they let their children know these things are from them; letting Santa give them the smaller, less expensive gifts. The reason for her request was simple—she wanted her children (and millions of others like them) to feel just as loved and valued by Santa as those children who received bigger and better gifts ‘from him’.
You see, this mother’s little girl came home from school the other day feeling less valued and loved than some of the other children in her class. It seems they had been discussing what Santa was going to be bringing and several of the little girl’s classmates were getting a (whole) lot more than she was.
This momma’s heart was breaking when the little girl said, “Does Santa like some kids more than he does others? Does he like _____ more than he likes me?”
When I read this, two things happened.
1) My heart became heavy. It became heavy for this momma who was faced with repairing her little girl’s belief that she was as precious and valuable as anyone in Santa’s sight. My heart was heavy for the little girl who was made to question her self-worth and who is already aware that to some (many), your value is measured in dollars and cents. My heart was heavy for everyone who is missing what this season is all about.
2) I could relate. I remember putting a play kitchen on layaway and needing the entire three months to pay that sixty dollars. I remember putting gifts under the tree every Christmas Eve after the kids went to bed while John asked, “Were we able to do it? Are they going to happy when they wake up and see what they got?”
As I write this, I find myself recalling many memories of Christmas' past and I realize few of them are about the actual gifts I've received. They are about the people and places I have experienced Christmas with. I am blessed to have a lifetime of Christmas memories and family and friends who understand what Christmas is really all about and it doesn’t have a thing to do with money.
What message are you sending to your children this Christmas? Is it a message that says bunches of presents equals bunches of joy? Or is it a message that says the only present that really matters is one wrapped and given with love?
Merry Christmas,Momma D