To Elf or Not to Elf?

How to Have a Christ-Focused Christmas Without Ruining the Fun or Lying to Your Kids

Unless  you’ve lived under a rock the past few years, it’s probably come to  your attention that Elf on the Shelf is all the rage. Everyone’s doing it and taking pictures of their Elves and posting on Facebook. Kids are going to school talking about the unexpected places their elf showed up in the night. There are even blogs dedicated to how to pull off the best Elf mischief.

I’ve been reluctant to get in on this new tradition. On one hand I marveled at the brilliance of the person who came up with the concept (and the millions of dollars they have undoubtedly made). I was also amused by all of the fun people seemed to be having placing their Elf every night with their kids waking up in the morning, excited to see what that little guy has been up to while they’ve been sleeping.

But a little nagging in the back of my mind prevented me from joining in on the fun.

The conflict in me is this… if I push Santa (or the Easter Bunny or Tooth Fairy) as real, how do I expect my children to believe or trust me about other thing things? Last year my daughter (who was three at the time), thought Santa and God were the same being. One night, she even started her prayer to Santa. Virginia, we have a problem.

How can I impress upon her that God is real if I also tell her that Santa is real? When she discovers Santa doesn’t exist, will she wonder if God really exists?

Just in time for the holiday season, To Elf or Not to Elf will explore:

  • The issue of whether or not we, as parents, should encourage magical thinking in the form of Santa and other beings.
  • The meanings and origins of popular holiday traditions.
  • A variety of fun and meaningful activities to help keep your family Christ-focused this Christmas season.

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About the Author

Shanna Goodman is a writer, reader, dreamer (and doer), mom, blogger, and an operations/ marketing executive.

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