A visit with Santa
Like many of you, I took my “littles” to see Santa. It was “Breakfast with Santa” at our home congregation which means donut holes and melted snow (water) were on the menu. The kids were in earthly heaven. The amazing children’s team had crafts ready for kids to make, balloon arches, Christmas trees decorated with sparkly lights, and, of course, a rather long line for the “king of the day”, Santa.
Our two little girls, who are both eighteen months old, occupied themselves with the green and red balloons that created a little playground of kicks and chasing. The old gentleman who sat at the end of the long line didn’t seem to bother them too much. But, three-year-old John Shepherd, had more of an interest. Bouncing a balloon and then looking at the bearded man was John Shepherd’s strategy as he accessed the situation and whether he would do as he saw the other children do.
Before our turn, we sat on a comfy bench just to the right of Santa. We “talked” about who he is, what he looks like and what he does. I explained that he has a beard like his Dubs (Willie), that he represents Christmas and giving, and that John Shepherd could tell him what he would like to get for Christmas. John Shep listened carefully, never giving me any indication of his grasp of the information or if he intended on speaking to the old man.
But soon it was our turn. And, to my surprise, John Shep was prepared. He walked right up to Santa, jumped in his lap, and said, “Dinosaurs.” He understood the assignment, as the young folks say.
You see, if you are so honored with imparting information on your grandchildren or great-grandchildren, don’t pass up the opportunity. I hope I never forget getting to sit with John Shepherd and explain something so important to our traditions and culture. I have no doubt he will forget, but I hope I don’t.
On that note, I also believe it is a grandparent’s job to pass down all they know about another man name Jesus Christ. It’s my goal to talk about Santa one time a year, but to talk about God and Jesus nearly every time I see my grandchildren. I am dedicated to ensuring they understand the assignment given to them to love the Lord, their God with all their heart and to love and serve others. I want my children, grands, and greats to know God loves them unconditionally; that Jesus came to earth, died, rose to Heaven and is coming back for them; and the Holy Spirit lives in them to help navigate this life. Now that’s a glorious assignment that I don’t want them to miss.
I watched John Shep on Santa’s lap with a refreshed and new appreciation for the Christmas season. I love how brave he was as he approached this strange character and how sure he was of his request. I pray he can always approach God with the same, no, I hope it’s more, courage, faith, and conviction.
Merry Christmas, my sweet friends. May God gift you with peace, joy and comfort this holiday season. And never forget the assignment.