Christmas is Not Your Birthday

What do you mean?  Happy Birthday to me?…

Can you imagine how confused our children are as it relates to Christmas?  They come into life and after their first birthday, they quickly begin to understand what birthdays are all about…presents for them.  Then we introduce Christmas, and it looks eerily similar to their birthday, because they once again receive mounds of presents.  It’s even worse in many instances because of all the stops we make to see family and extended family.  If your routine looks anything like ours, you eat and open presents for multiple days.

Somewhere in all of the clutter, as Christians, we must find a way to tell the real Christmas story.  One that doesn’t inlcude any mention of the jolly old elf or eight tiny reindeer.  Mike Slaughter (@revmslaughter), Pastor of Ginghamsburg Church has done an amazing job in moving all of us back to where the story is relevant in our own lives.  We are studying his book Christmas Is Not Your Birthday during the five weeks in December, and I am having trouble putting it down.  He really outlines the state of our Christmas very well and challenges all believers to evaluate themselves and their traditions.

Slaughter writes, “Think about the way we describe Santa: ‘He sees you when you’re sleeping… He knows if you’ve been bad or good!’  Our popular notions of Santa Claus reflect the way we have reduced God to a mythical watchdog who judges our niceness or naughtiness and metes out rewards and punishments accordingly.”

Christmas Is Not Your Birthday, by Mike Slaughter, excerpted from page 3

You can get the book here.

Do you agree or disagree?  What new traditions could your family start which focused more on presence rather than presents?  Leave your comments below.

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