Day 108: A Simple Christmas Lived Out

This year at my church we have all been challenged to live a Simple Christmas.  To practice, Simple Generosity (less spending, more giving), Simple Presence (less hurry, more time), and Simple Worship (less me, more Jesus).

I'll confess to you that at the outset, I thought this was an AWESOME idea.  But lived out, it is harder than I imagined.

I think the most difficult thing for me has been to have more Jesus and less Santa.  All of the fun things I want to do with the girls for Christmas, like photos with Santa, the Elf on the Shelf, all of that, I have set aside to try to help them understand the true meaning of Christmas.  It's not that I'm opposed to the big red man.  I'm not.  I think he's awesome and a lot of fun and a great piece of childhood fantasy that proves to be a very fond childhood memory to this day . . . and I still grew up to love Jesus . . .

And I'm not opposed to the Elf on the Shelf or any of that.  So please don't feel the need to email me or message me or tell me why Santa isn't real or is real or we should or shouldn't teach our children such things.

It's just that the girls are so little, and I want their deepest, most foundational understanding of the celebration of Christmas to be about Jesus.

So we are working on the story of Jesus' birth.

This was Shortstack's retelling to me this morning.

"I'n a big girl.  I not a baby.

Jedus was a baby. And da angels sing to da sheep.

And dey see da stars.  And the big big star.

And dey find da Jedus in da barn.  And da cows and da sheep sing.

And Jedus gets married.  I love Jedus." 

(She's a little confused by Mary and married . . . her world is a little consumed with "married" right now.)

But my point is this; she launched into this entire story about Jesus all from a discussion about why she can't wear diapers anymore because she's a big girl and not a baby.  And the word BABY triggered a retelling of the Christmas story.

So she's getting it.  Little by little, she's getting it. 

All that to say, the simple message of Christmas really is the story of a baby.  A baby who changed the world.

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