We love to hear from our readers, especially around Christmas time. One story, in particular, impressed us so much that we had to share.
Chris Koehn describes a family tradition that came to life when her children were young, helping her put the “holy” back in “holidays” once and for all. Amid television commercials, wish lists, house lights and wrapping paper she had became worried that the true meaning of Christmas was being diluted. The challenge was how best to teach her little girl and boy the authentic Christmas message.
Even preschoolers can be adversely affected by commercialism, as she discovered one December. “What is Christmas about?” she asked her little ones, curious about their knowledge of this sacred season. “It’s about presents and Santa!” her kiddos responded, adding “And baby Jesus,” as an after thought. It was the after thought that got her thinking. “I wanted our main focus to be on Jesus’ birth – God’s wonderful gift to us,” says Koehn. “Obviously I needed to ramp up my instruction on the true meaning of Christmas.
Her solution was brilliant. “We give gifts to one another at Christmas for three reasons,” she told her brood. “Number one, God loved us so much that he gave us Jesus, the perfect gift. Number two, the Wise Men gave baby Jesus presents, and we exchange gifts just like them. And number three, Christmas is Jesus’ birthday party and we celebrate it with presents.” Her son and daughter were all ears, soaking up the message. The idea of Christmas as a birthday party made sense to them both.
The time came to bake Santa some cookies for Christmas Eve. However, her children had her own plans. They wanted to make birthday cake, instead. She was floored at their suggestion! Of course! Why hadn’t she thought of that sooner? Koehn promised to bake birthday cake instead of cookies from that year forward – what better way to honor Christ’s birth than to share birthday cake? “We can leave a slice out for Santa,” the kids exclaimed, excited at the prospect.
Santa must have loved that cake very much, because he left a thank you note for the kids on Christmas morning:
Dear Carly and Hohlt,
I’m so glad you shared a slice of Jesus’ birthday cake with me! Thank you so much! I’m so glad that you know the true meaning of Christmas!
P. S. My real name is Saint Nick and I am Jesus Christ’s ambassador. Notice the “Christ” in “Christmas” – Jesus Christ IS Christmas!
During that special Christmas came a simple but meaningful Christmas tradition. Although her kids are now much older, to this day Koehn and her family leave birthday cake out for Santa. It’s a tradition worth sharing!
Katy Christian Magazine wishes you a very merry Christmas, sends you much love, and hopes you enjoy a delicious slice of birthday cake Christmas morning!