Tuesday, November 27, 2018

What's the Point?!

Warning: If you still hear the bell, you might not want to read this post.

~*~

My grandson Jakob was visiting me a few weeks ago. I asked him nonchalantly what he might like for Christmas. I was not prepared for his response.

"Christmas!  What's the point?!"

There was a fair amount of heat and his hands were helping punctuate each comment with sharp gesticulations.

I was both taken aback and amused.

When I could get a word in edgewise, I asked a few more pertinent questions and discovered, beyond the obvious, the following:

*Jake had learned last year when he was ten that there is no Santa.

*He felt betrayed by his parents who had "lied" to him all these years.

*He felt like a fool for believing all these years when he knew very well that the entire story was "ridiculous." He'd known the truth since he was six.

*He was worried about what further important information his parents might be withholding.

In addition, he made insightful, pertinent comments such as that he had been thanking Santa all these years when he should have been thanking his parents.  He wondered why parents would do such a thing as lie about Santa.

Finally, when he was pretty much winded with his commentary, I suggested that perhaps parents encouraged such beliefs because they wanted their children to experience the wonder of Christmas. I told him this story of my own:

When your daddy was a little boy only about four years old, he told me that he loved Jesus all year long, but at Christmastime, he loved Santa best. I decided that that was not a good thing and so I told him and your auntie all about the real Santa, a far more fascinating story by the way. They had not reacted well. They had cried and cried. I wished that I had done what my sister did for she never mentioned Santa Claus; he was just not a part of their Christmas story. (I might have done what she did if I had had an older sister to learn by as she had. ☺)

Now you, Jake, have been taught about Santa and have learned that it is not all quite true. Which way would you have preferred? Never to believe as your cousins Kirsten and Keanne, to have been taught and learn the truth early like your dad and your aunt or as you did? I could tell that he was thinking it over, but he did not share his thoughts.

He was still worried that Christmas had lost its sparkle. (In fact, his mom decorated for Christmas just last weekend and his home looks like Better Homes and Gardens, but he is showing no interest.)

At last, I got to the crux of the matter. Christmas is about the fact that Jesus was willing to be born in human form and come to this earth as a little baby in Bethlehem.. He was the only baby born to die. Humanity desperately needed Him. We need Him today and every day. The joy of Christmas is not Santa; the joy of Christmas is Jesus Himself. I shared that I still get a special thrill at Christmas and Santa has not been a part of my life since long decades ago. I urged Jakob to think about things differently and to celebrate for all the right reasons.

Perhaps one day, I'll share with him that the economy of the entire world is literally based upon the "birthday" of Jesus Christ, which we celebrate on December 25. I find it infinitely fascinating that Jesus is holding this old world together. These are points that can not be refuted. Look it up! For that reason alone, I shall celebrate Christmas! And there's more so much more.

When my son arrived that day to fetch his son, I mentioned the conversation that Jakob and I had been having. My son grinned wryly and said, "Yes, Jake is holding a grudge."

On Thanksgiving Day, Jake commented that the trees around here were getting smaller and smaller. Whatever could have given him that idea?

Jake took a look at my Tag Book...I can tell!


Yesterday, when I put up the new 7.5 foot tree, I began to wonder what in the world I had been thinking...

Now I know.



I was thinking about Jakob. It's time to ❇️sparkle❇️

P.S. For further reading on the Christmas discussion, visit Brenda *Here.* It'll be a blessing!











38 comments:

  1. I grew up with Santa and Christmas and I taught my children the same. Since Santa truly was a real person it really is not just a made up story. Parts of it are but it adds to the excitement that Christmas is upon us. I am sorry that Jakob feels so hurt but I hope that he soon realizes that Christmas Magic is in our hearts.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Lucky him for having someone to talk about his disappointment with. We didn't grow up believing in Santa, no Santa photos, etc. Our Christmases were generally pretty stark growing up. Very few years had gifts under the tree. I'm going to have to ask our kids how we treated Santa with them. Good for you for getting that beautiful big tree! Praying right now that Jakob will enjoy the sparkle this year yet...

    ReplyDelete
  3. What a great job you did of telling Jakob about Christmas.
    I told my kids there was no Santa when they asked me. David was 5 and I told him the truth.
    I don't even remember believing in Santa.

    ReplyDelete
  4. I remember feeling like Jakob, Vee. You handled it much better than my Mama, though. A cousin revealed the ugly truth to me one Sunday afternoon and I went straight to my Mama. She told me if I no longer believed in Santa Clause then I wouldn't be getting gifts from him. So being the oldest I was expected to keep it to myself and not let on to my brother and sisters. Mama really didn't handle it well, but you certainly did! Love the large tree, especially for Jakob! ♥

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Oh...that is a sad story, Martha Ellen. Jake held on for longer than he might have because someone he dearly loves told him in sober tones that once a little boy no longer believes in Santa, Santa no longer believes in him. But Jesus does!

      Delete
  5. There are so many ways to celebrate this season. I didn't grow up with Santa Claus, and knew that my parents gave us gifts. I never missed it. Tim didn't really ever make a big deal of Santa, either, and we raised our own children without Santa Claus. Now each of them is doing their own thing - one has no Santa, the other doesn't. We'll see what the third one does.
    Christmas sparkles because of Jesus.

    ReplyDelete
  6. I don't remember exactly when it was that I learned there was not a Santa. But I had three younger sisters that still believed so I went along with it. I don't remember being disappointed. I always knew the real reason for the season. xo

    ReplyDelete
  7. You have definitely given us food for thought. I am glad you got a big tree though. I think you are right...it is time to shine and sparkle and focus on Jesus.

    ReplyDelete
  8. Thank you for sharing this special conversation with us, Vee. Oh, I think the Lord gave you great wisdom in your response to Jake! Indeed, you did get to the crux of the matter and gave him much to ponder. I do pray that he finds the sparkle!

    By the way, my younger sister was the first to figure out the Santa thing. I was that kind of a child.

    ReplyDelete
  9. All the kids in my family were brought up believing in Santa. Somewhere along the way I figured it out. So did my sister. When we were told the truth by our mom (about 9 or 10 years old) we said, "Oh, we already know that." To us, Santa was a fun thing like Micky Mouse. Real but not real. We were brought up in the church and knew from the earliest age whose birthday we were celebrating.

    ReplyDelete
  10. That's a sticky situation. Summer and Jesse, Jr. both believed in Santa....they are the two oldest. 19 years later when I had Amber and then Benjamin, I was older and decided it wasn't good to lie to them. First there's the tooth fairy, then the Easter bunny and then there's Santa Claus. I figured if they found out those three were not real - would they doubt Jesus being real? So I just explained that some parents pretend there really is a Santa Claus just to have fun with their children. That worked well for us....although we did get in trouble with all the neighbor parents when my children told their children the truth!
    But now Summer, Jesse and Amber all have children of their own. Guess what? They all allow their kids to believe in Santa. Now for Amber, this was done as a concession to her husband, Mike, who had grown up believing in Santa Claus and really and truly enjoyed it. Amber gave in but saud she didn't like the idea of Santa getting all the credit for the big ticket gift items!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Oh you brought up an interesting point...Jake also got into a fair amount of trouble by being the town crier. Oh dear! I agree with you...all those characters to “believe” in and Jesus gets lumped right in there with them. That is the true shame of it.

      Delete
  11. We raised our children with Santa but only one small gift, the rest were clearly labelled who they were from. Hopefully Jake will get over his disappointment soon and find soe sparkle. Impressive tree.

    ReplyDelete
  12. My dear Vee, I so enjoyed this post and your loving heart for Jakob. I appreciated what you said to him and you did so in such a gentle, loving way. I truly hope this Christmas is filled to the brim with sparkle for Jakob.

    I grew up believing in Santa, but I wasn't too disappointed when I found out he wasn't real. I remember feeling a little sad, but other than that I don't remember much else. My husband and I told my son from the very beginning that Santa was not real and I must say that I am very thankful we chose to do that. I know Santa can be fun and everyone can do as they please, but for us, we want our son to relish in the joy of Christ's birth for He is the greatest gift. Christmas - what a special time of the year. Hugs to you, my friend!

    ReplyDelete
  13. I think it's so interesting how kids react so differently when they find out about Santa. What a good discussion you had with Jakob. I'm glad that he shared his thoughts with you. I think Jake will certainly enjoy the sparkle of your new 7.5 ft. tree! You're a wonderful grandmother, Vee!

    ReplyDelete
  14. Vee, loving your beautiful big tree! I decided last year to buy a skinny tree so it would not take up so much space and I would not have to move a piece of furniture out of my living room. I must say that that ugly skinny tree has been quite pretty once I get it decorated. LOL! And I didn't have to move MY recliner! Sounds like you had a wonderful conversation with your Jakob. Christmas is for sure all about the birth of Christ and why He came into this world. Santa is the magic that I still love...even as an older woman. LOL! Hugs and blessings, Cindy

    ReplyDelete
  15. He'll come around and eventually forgive. That's a really big tree! You've got a lot of work to do. Hope you're going to share the results when you're done. Ahh, that tag book. How cute he was looking at it. I mean, who wouldn't? It begs to be opened. ~ Your friend Abby

    ReplyDelete
  16. One more thing . . your blog header . . . the photo in the upper right corner . . . things look very familiar. Just sayin'.

    ReplyDelete
  17. I have adult kids who don't include Santa Claus and others who have but don't make a big deal out of it. I am a fan of make-believe but never had trouble keeping Jesus in His rightly-earned place at Christmas. Different ways of dealing with it with different personalities.

    ReplyDelete
  18. You did an amazing job explaining!!! Love that tree wow

    ReplyDelete
  19. You are such a wonderful grandmother! You even made me feel better.

    ReplyDelete
  20. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

    ReplyDelete
  21. Oh...bless Jakob's sweet heart. It's tough for a kid to find out the truth but it's a truth that he will be SO glad he knows about! You handled that situation wonderfully, I think. And I cannot wait to see that HUGE tree all decorated! Also, thank you for sharing that beautiful link to Brenda's blog. I needed to be sitting by the fire sipping hot chocolate in a Christmas tree-lit room while reading it. Maybe I will revisit after I get my house all decorated!

    ReplyDelete
  22. Hi Vee~

    Everything about this post just spoke to my soul! I understand, Jakob, he really did lose his sparkle with the loss of, Santa. You are a wonderful grandmother, with the perfect answers...it made me smile! I did jump over and take a peek at Brenda's blog, I loved it. I need all the uplifting, positive, coziness I can muster right now, and you two did the trick...thank you!

    Hugs and Love,
    Barb

    ReplyDelete
  23. Awwww... thank you, friend. When our two kids were little, I always said that we were having fun pretending there is a Santa. I wanted them to know Jesus was real and Santa was pretend. It was amusing that even though when they were very little I said we were pretending there was a Santa, they both wanted to believe so they talked about Santa as if he was real. Eventually they both merged into the "wink wink" look when we talked about Santa. It reminds me of how Lewis thought Christianity was just another myth but Tolkien didn't argue, he just told Lewis that Christianity is THE TRUE myth. That still gives me chills when I think about it. (Wouldn't you have loved to have been there when they talked?)

    ReplyDelete
  24. Vee, this is a beautiful post and I just simply love how you handled this delicate topic with Jake. You gave him much food for thought in such a gentle and reasonable way.

    I grew up with Santa but it was always sort of an open secret that the gifts marked "from Santa" were from my parents and that they filled the stockings. My dad had a difficult childhood and I doubt Santa figured into it. My mother remembered when her youngest brother (who had been taught and encouraged by his older siblings to believe in Santa) learned the truth. His reaction was much the same as Jake's and there was vehement anger at having been lied to all those years. I think that's why my mother kept Santa pretty low-key with her own kids.

    With our own kids, we taught them right from the beginning that Santa as most people think of him was just sort of a fairy tale, a fun part of Christmas that some people enjoy with their kids. We had a fun book when I was growing up (and I got one for my own kids) called Jolly Old Santa Claus, with the most wonderful, gorgeous illustrations of life at the North Pole. It truly presented it as a fairy tale and was just fun. But the kids knew from the beginning that Santa was not real, though we did suggest they not share that information with "true believers" among their friends and relatives.

    This brought back a memory of friends of ours, who taught their kids that Santa was not real, period. If asked in the grocery store or elsewhere if Santa was coming to their house, these girls would flatly answer, "NO." They got more than a few shocked looks!

    ReplyDelete
  25. Poor Jake...But you are certainly helping him work through this "truth". I grew up with Santa, but when my Dad died when I was in Kindergarten, the next Christmas I was up when my mother and grandfather decorated the tree I had always thought Santa brought, and realized it was not "true", that Santa story. But my mother told me that God is love and love is what makes all these things happen and that was a beautiful explanation for me. ...Then when my own children were experiencing the Hungarian version of Christmas in which the Christ child, the Baby Jesus, brings the gifts I was worried for quite a time that this would mess up their belief when they finally found out it was not true. But Paul told me not to worry. And it did all work out. In the Hungarian version the angels come along to help Jesus and I remember talking to an old lady when I was first dating Paul. She was sure she remembered seeing a flash of light as the angels left when her parents let them into the room where the tree and gifts were. All these different stories! But people work it all out and I'm sure Jake will too....

    ReplyDelete
  26. And this coming Sunday is the first Sunday of Advent, and we will be joining my daughter Emily for singing Advent and Christmas carols and having "Kaffee und Kuchen" afterwards.

    ReplyDelete
  27. I agree with Brenda...you handled the discussion well. We did have Santa when our kids were growing up...but I think they always knew it was 'make believe'. I had to smile at the 'tag book' that you knew Jake had checked out. :) He will love your big tree!

    ReplyDelete
  28. I just read your post and it made me think of a sweet little book, No Holly for Miss Quinn, we're reading for our December book club. Have you read any Miss Read (author) books? This is my first. They are old fashioned, short and I think you might enjoy them. I have this one on my iPad so it's only 2 dollars. They are in library too I would think. But I just got done reading last night in Miss Quin's story, how she found out there was no Santa and it was similar reaction to your grandson. She was about the same age.

    I can sympathize, but it's hard to understand for me as I never thought Santa was real, nor did my kids. They always thought of him as a fun side to Christmas. My grands are the same but know they can't talk about it much around their friends, just in case.... At Christmas I always add a small gift to the "big" gift and say "this is from Santa." For fun I say that. The grands are always asking why I say that when there IS NO SANTA. I hope your dear boy comes to grips with it soon and can enjoy Christmas!

    So this is the comment that would have been, should I have had time to go through the hoops they make me go through to leave a comment!

    Send a picture when your tree is decorated. It's a pretty one!

    dotsie
    https://podso.blogspot.com


    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I may have. I read one about an author who was writing about everyone in town and they eventually caught on. Then in a sequel she marries. That’s about as far as I got and they may not be the same ones you’re mentioning.

      Hope that you don’t mind my copying and pasting. I hate to let good comments get away! ☺️

      Delete
    2. The books you mention are the D.E. Stevenson books but No Holly for Miss Quinn is from the Miss Read books. I think you would really like them.

      Delete
    3. I have ordered it and it should arrive just before Christmas.

      Delete
  29. Wow, you handled that conversation so well, Vee, and it was good that you had some good comparison to make! I know Jake will remember being able to talk to his grandmother about Santa years from now :)

    ReplyDelete
  30. Loved your post Vee, so glad to see you are still blogging. I'm getting back in the saddle after far too long away.

    Merry Christmas

    ReplyDelete
  31. I love this post and I'm going to share it with my daughter-in-law who experienced the same thing and was heartbroken that her parents had lied to her. Santa has not been part of the Christmas story with her children, either.

    ReplyDelete
  32. I have a suspicion that my two grandsons also know that Santa Claus is a myth, but they don't openly admit it, maybe for their younger sister's sake?
    I always loved the 1897's editor's answer to Virginia, "Yes, Virginia, There is a Santa Claus" https://www.nysun.com/editorials/yes-virginia/68502/ It sums up the question of Santa Claus so well.
    I read Brenda'a blog post and was happy to see Fra Giovanni's letter in the beginning. I was first introduced to that letter when I was in my high school literature text book, and it has alway meant a lot to me. "Take Joy" Isn't that a wonderful way to celebrate the birth of Christ at Christmas--he gave us love, joy, peace, forgiveness and salvation.

    ReplyDelete
  33. Funny thing...when I (and my children) learned there was no Santa Clause, my folks lying to me about it never entered my mind...nor did it for my children. What is different now than back then ? I do wonder.....

    ReplyDelete

Thank you for commenting! If you ask a question, I will answer it here in case anyone else was wondering. Reply boxes are provided so that you may feel free to interject a thought on any comment. I do love good conversation!