Today I went to the Moms In Prayer group at the kids’ school. It’s such a great program and so organized. Each week we focus on one character quality of God and spend time praising Him for it. Then we spend a few minutes in thanksgiving.
This week’s character quality was King of Glory. (HELLO! How perfect is that after the 2nd day of Truth in the Tinsel?!) So, when it was my turn to pray—who am I kidding? I just jumped in there because I couldn’t keep it inside me, I said, “God, thank you for Christmas! I feel like our whole world is turning their eyes and hearts to you–even unwittingly people are worshipping you for the coming of Jesus! I’m getting excited because I feel like this will be THE time that some kids will understand and really know YOU. They’ll find you on your birthday and never be the same!”
Well, I don’t know if I said it exactly like that, but that’s what I felt like. I feel like there’s a current of spiritual energy running through our world during December. Even in the midst of the crazy commercialism, there’s something that is just so profound and powerful about all of us talking about, thinking about, putting-up-inflatable-decorations-in-our-front-yards about Jesus’ birth!
One reason I’m so passionate about Truth in the Tinsel is because of how passionate I am about Christmas. I feel like if we as parents would use this month to really focus on, worship and celebrate Jesus, our kids would never be the same! It’s such a bright, shiny, magical, glittery time–let’s make all that shimmer focus on Him!
Of course, there are a bazillion books and crafts and snacks and coloring pages and advent calendars and movies and CDs to help you do this. There are amazing Advent devotions and curriculums to help you lead your kids to Jesus (*cough* Truth in the TInsel *cough*). But I know, it can be overwhelming. Who has time to sit down and make/bake/craft All The Things?
So, can I tell you a secret? Give you a tip? Wanna know the sure-fire, no prep, no cost, easy peasy lemon squeezy way to lead your kids to Jesus during this Christmas season?
Just talk about Jesus. Turn every Christmas conversation back to him. How do you do this? Here’s a few of my favorites:
1. Christmas tree
Picking out a tree? Decorating it? Admiring it’s beauty and scent? Turn the conversation back to Jesus and his everlasting love, just like the evergreen of the tree. Talk about how God takes dead and broken lives and turns them into something new and useful, just like we turn dead trees into holiday centerpieces.
2. Christmas lights
As you drive though your neighborhood admiring the lights, turn it back to Jesus, the Light of the World. Quote (or try to quote) all the Scriptures about light you can remember in the Bible.
3. Christmas gifts
As you wrap presents and make giving lists, remind your kids that the best present of all is Jesus. Talk about how sacrificial of a gift it was for Him to leave His glory to become a man. Remind your kids of John 3:16 that says God gave because He loved us. Do we give because of love?
4. Christmas wreaths
Wreaths are a circle which doesn’t have a beginning or end–just like God! He’s always been and always will be! When we hang a wreath on a door, we can let it be a sign to everyone that God is in control!
God promised that even though our sins are red like scarlet, he would wash them whiter than snow! When you have your first snowfall (or see it on TV, like us on the dirty South), talk about how beautiful freshly fallen snow is–how it covers dirt and brokenness, just like Jesus’ does for us!
6. Candy Cane
Tell your kids the legend of the Candy Cane that says the cane is really a J for Jesus (or a shepherd’s staff for our Good Shepherd) and the red and white stripes remind us of the stripes he took on His back so our sins could be white as snow! (Oooh, they’re all coming together!)
You could talk about how gingerbread man are made in our image just like we are made in God’s image, how stockings are filled with good things just like Jesus wants to fill us with joy, how bells are an announcement just like angels announced Jesus’ birth to shepherds, how Santa was really a servant-hearted man who secretly gave to honor Jesus! I could go on and on!
It’s really just about doing what Deuteronomy 6 says, “ These commandments that I give you today are to be on your hearts. Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up. Tie them as symbols on your hands and bind them on your foreheads. Write them on the doorframes of your houses and on your gates.”
This December you’ll be doing lots of talking about Christmas. Turn those conversations and symbols around and make them celebrate Jesus!
I’m crazy excited because today I’m co-hosting the Intentional Parenting Link Party with Keri from Living In This Season! She’s got a super sweet post up on her blog about experiencing Christmas (instead of drowning in it!) that you really need to read. Then, you can link up your own intentional-parenting post below!
If you link up (or even if you don’t) click around to some of the other blog posts, leave a comment or tweet about the awesomeness you just discovered. You’ll probably even make a new friend!
Link up now!!