Every year, my son will ask me, “Daddy, when is it going to be Christmas?” He asks this several times in anticipation that Christmas is coming soon. He is so excited about the toys he will receive that he can hardly stand it. One of the things he absolutely hates is when we are at the store and he asks for a toy and I say, “Not today. Maybe for Christmas!” “You always say that!” He often replies. (He’s right. I do use that line quite a bit!) But when Christmas finally comes, it is so exciting to see his eyes light up as receives all of his presents.
As parents, maybe you have a similar experience. You enjoy buying gifts for your children and have so much fun watching them receive all of it. It’s a blessing to be able to see your child’s eyes light up in excitement.
But what if something is missing?
As Jace gets older I consider more and more his spiritual development. In many situations I ask myself if there is an opportunity to show him the gospel of Jesus Christ. Christmas should be an easy one, but it can become so busy that we miss one of the greatest opportunities of the year.
So how can I do this?
In the midst of opening presents, eating, and playing with new toys, I hope you will consider these five things you can do to focus on the true meaning of Christmas: The birth of our Savior, Jesus Christ.
Don’t forget this one! Before you do anything, pray that the true meaning of Christmas would be enlightened in your hearts this season. If we fail to pray then we will fail to rely on and see the one who is truly doing the work in you and in your children. Remember, you do not possess any power to help your child focus on Jesus. That is the job of the Holy Spirit. Your job is to be faithful.
2. Read the Christmas story as a family using Luke 2:1-20
This is often a tradition for some families, but if it’s not yet a tradition, this can be the perfect time to start it. Allow the kids to be a part of the story by asking them questions about what they heard. Yes, this may be awkward at first, and it’s possible the kids will just be ready to get finished so they can play with their toys, but anytime we open Scripture and read God’s word to our children, God will use it and honor it.
3. Read the names of Jesus together
Do this with your children to help them see how incredible it is that the “King of Kings” and the “Lord of Lords” came to earth as a baby. Below is a list of some of the names of Jesus found in Scripture:
Almighty (Revelation 1:8)
Alpha and Omega (Revelation 1:8)
Advocate (I John 2:1)
Author of Eternal Salvation (Hebrews 5:9)
Beloved Son (Matthew 12:18)
Bread of Life (John 6:32)
Cornerstone (Psalm 118:22)
Creator (I Corinthians 1:16-17)
Deliverer (I Thessalonians 1:10)
Everlasting Father (Isaiah 9:6)
Founder and Perfecter of our Faith (Hebrews 12:2)
Good Shepherd (John 10:11)
Great High Priest (Hebrews 4:14)
I am (John 8:58)
Immanuel (Isaiah 7:14)
King of Kings (Revelation 17:14)
Lamb of God (John 1:29)
Light of the World (John 8:12)
Lord of Lords (Revelation 19:16)
Messiah (John 1:41)
Mighty One (Isaiah 60:16)
Our Hope (I Timothy 1:1)
Prince of Peace (Isaiah 9:6)
Savior (Luke 2:11)
Son of Man (Luke 19:10)
Son of God (Luke 1:32)
The Word (John 1:1)
Victorious One (Revelation 3:21)
4. Sing Christmas Carols together
Kids love singing, so what better way to share the gospel with them than singing Christmas Carols during Christmas? Sing the song, then ask them questions about it. For example, “Joy to the world, the Lord is come. Let earth receive her King!” So I might ask my son, “Who is the Lord?” “Who is this King?” Depending on the age and maturity of the child, you may want to go into deeper questions such as, “Why is he the King?” “Why is it such a joyful thing that he is come?”
Again, this may be a little awkward if you have never done it, but it will get easier and God will use your faithfulness to speak to your children.
5. Read a Christmas book together
Below is a list of Children’s books that are perfect for sharing the true meaning of Christmas with your children. It’s a little late to order a physical copy, but if you would like to read one to your child this Christmas, I have provided links to the Kindle versions for instant download:
Let Every Heart Prepare Him Room- Nancy Guthrie
Song of the Stars: A Christmas Story- Sally Lloyd-Jones
My Merry Christmas- Sally Lloyd-Jones
Christmas Stories: Heartwarming Classics of Angels, a Manger, and the Birth of Hope- Max Lucado
Pick one of these and do it. Be faithful with the time and and children God has given you, and share with them the most incredible gift ever given to them. They may not recognize that right then, but do not be discouraged. You are being faithful, and God will bless that.
Be encouraged. Be Faithful.
“Many a man proclaims his own steadfast love,
but a faithful man who can find?”- Proverbs 20:6