Happy Jesus Birthday a bit early as it’s not December 25 yet in my part of the world.
As we approach the day celebrated as the day of the birth of Jesus Christ, Christians should ask themselves one question – do you believe “Jesus is the only reason for the season?” Now, before you answer this question, stop and ask yourself a second question – Am I putting anybody or anything on the same playing field as Jesus on His birthday? That includes some imaginary fat guy who supposedly breaks into your house and leaves your children, grandchildren, etc. gifts. Because when you place Santa Claus at the same level as Jesus, you can’t honestly say “Jesus is the only reason for the season.” I never lied to my daughter about Santa Claus, the Easter Bunny, or the Tooth Fairy. And that was before I read numerous studies that show lying to your children about these three mythical beings only causes numerous problems with your children. You are teaching your children that lying is okay and you shouldn’t be surprised when they lie to you. After all, you started it. Next, why should they believe anything you say about Jesus, the Bible, God, etc. once they figure out you are lying? Many people I otherwise consider strong Christians fail with the Santa/Bunny lie. They don’t want their children to miss out or any number of other rationalizations and justifications. How about you start telling your children, grandchildren, and others the truth? To compound the lie, some parents play the behave or Santa won’t bring you anything yet most who play this card still give children Santa gifts no matter how bad the children behave which creates another series of lies. Sadly, very few denominations that call themselves “Christian” are willing to condemn such lies. Should it be okay to have Jesus play second fiddle to Santa or the Bunny? How about a resounding “No!”
Interesting that a psychology publication in one year argues against lying about Santa, but a few years later comes out with it’s okay to lie about Santa. Some experts claim there is little research supporting either position, but over the years I have repeatedly read research pointing out the various reasons why it’s bad to spread the Santa lie.
So, next time you feel compelled to lie to your children, grandchildren, or others about Santa or the Easter Bunny, ask yourself why it’s okay to put something else in the place of Jesus on two of the most important days in the history of the world – i.e. Jesus Birthday and Resurrection Sunday. If you choose to continue lying to them, realize other children have parents who value telling their children the truth and some of those children will no doubt expose the truth. This doesn’t even begin to cover when you have multiple children with a fair age difference because that means you either encourage the older children to lie to the younger children or you lie to the younger children when the older children expose your lie. Talk about a slippery slope.
I didn’t include links to studies as they are easy enough to find online, including some that jump on the Santa lie is okay train.The simple fact is lying to your children is something you shouldn’t do. There’s no such thing as a “white lie.”With the advent of the Internet and so many parents and schools letting children access the World Wide Web, what are the odds your child(ren) already knows the truth? Check out Wikipedia’s article on Santa Claus or even a simple Santa Claus search online. The problem with lies is you keep having to compound the lies and often wind up bringing in others to support your lies. Plus, trying to rationalize to your children why it’s okay for you to lie about Santa Claus, but not okay for them to lie about something else.