So, with Christmas flying by so quickly I didn't get to post all the things I had wanted to for the 12 Days of Christmas blog party I participated in this year. I was happy that I was at least able to do two posts, but there was especially this one that I had pretty much finished that I was planning to post Christmas Eve... but unfortunately, I never actually got around to it. But instead of waiting another whole year, I decided, why not just share this post now and have a little after-Christmas party? So... here it is! :)
Growing up, our parents never did the whole Santa thing with my siblings and me. We've joked around about Santa Claus sometimes, and even usually leave cookies and milk for "Santa" -- but we were always told and knew that it was really Mommy and Daddy leaving us presents, and that the jolly old bearded man who is said to live in the freezing North Pole with his happy little elves, making toys for good children and mining coal for the bad ones, was all just make believe. So, of course, when my parents told me he wasn't real, I believed them. I trusted them, not giving it a second thought.
But when I was around five or six years old, my trust was put to the test. One evening (I think it was Christmas Eve) me and some of the other kids at our church were standing outside on the church porch after a service, probably getting ready to leave to go back home.
So we were out there chattering and such when one of the older girls pointed up suddenly and said to me, "Look! It's Santa's sleigh! There!"
I jerked my head up and searched the night sky for a second. "Aw, you missed it," she said.
And then our conversation continued something like this...
"You were just joking," I said back to her.
"No! I really saw it; Santa's sleigh was really there."
I stared up at the moon bright in the sky that night, searching deep into my thoughts for some explanation. And then the thought hit me... IS Santa actually real? Is she kidding? But why would she lie to me? She keeps saying it's true... Maybe it... IS true...
It wasn't too awfully long before I came to myself, however. Daddy and Mommy told me Santa wasn't real. They wouldn't lie to me. I knew that. So, I chose to believe them instead of this girl. I put what my parents said above what she had said.
So, I was thinking... How much more then should we trust and believe our Heavenly Daddy and in what He tells us is true above what others say?
Even if our parents are the best parents in the world, God is still a much better Father to us than they could ever be. Like Jesus says in Matthew 7:11, "
If we've had good, loving, caring parents all our lives, we've built a trust in them. We know we can trust them because we know their character. But sadly, a lot of people, even confessing Christians, don't seem to know much about God's character -- so because of this, they don't fully trust Him. They think He's the one causing all their problems and is out to get them; they think they can never know what God will do. They think He is breaking and hurting them.
But this isn't what God is like at all! God is a trustworthy Father. He is faithful. He is love. God doesn't give us problems -- He gives us answers! I think there are actually many times when we forget that there's a devil in this world, too. God isn't the bad guy. The devil is the one who's doing the killing, stealing, and destroying here on this earth and in our lives -- not God! God is working to help us out of those messes the devil tries sending our way. And He sent Jesus to this earth to give us life -- and not only that -- but life more abundantly! (John 10:10)
We can be like Jesus when the devil tried to tempt Him in the wilderness. (Matt. 4:1-11) When the devil throws a temptation or lie our way, we should be saying right back to him, like Jesus said, "'It is written!' What my Father says is the truth of the matter, and I choose to believe and trust Him -- not you."
When you grow up a Christian your whole life, I think it can sometimes be easy to become passive about the whole Christmas story and Jesus' resurrection. But maybe we should think about it in this way... God didn't have to send Jesus for us. I'm sure God, Jesus, the Holy Spirit, and all the angels up there could have just stayed right where they were and had a fine time up in Heaven without giving another thought to all of us down here after Adam disobeyed in the very beginning. God didn't have to make the extra effort for us by sending us His Son to save us... but He did. He chose to. Why? Because of how much He loves us!
John 3:16 makes it very clear just how much God loves all of us -- he "SO loved the world"! He didn't just love us -- He SO loved us! And that is why that first Christmas happened. Because of God's great love for every person here on this earth. There would be no Christmas if God hadn't "so loved the world". But He did so love us. That's why we celebrate Christmas.
And that's why we truly can trust our Daddy and in what He tells us is true. <3