“It’s December, Mommy! Christmas is coming!” announced my little one a few days ago. Participating in this excitement was my elder one who asked what gift Santa would be bringing for him this year.
I am a mom of two little boys aged 4 & 6 and Christmas is one holiday that my kids wait for throughout the year! Whether you are a Christian or not Christmas is celebrated across different religions and faiths. Santa, winters, snow and, most importantly, gifts are what makes this a family holiday to be enjoyed by one and all, especially kids. I love celebrating these little moments with them, and as a parent, I always question the fact as to what gift should I give my kids or what is it that my kids are learning through this festival.
Since ages, we human beings have tried finding a way to come together as a community and celebrate our differences and friendships alike. Most of the festivals that we celebrate, mythical or not, have an ingrained narrative of the triumph of good over evil, or a hero and a villain, a simple story that helps us understand the qualities and importance of being a good human being.
As a parent, I feel that it is essential for my children to understand the true meaning behind these festivals, and Christmas has many stories to tell.
So, I gather them around and start telling them that when a little boy called Jesus Christ was born, the star of Bethlehem shone extra bright and three wise men travelled across the desert to visit this baby because he was special. Every baby that God sends on earth is special because they are born out of magic called love. The story of birth and life of Jesus Christ is not only about love. It stands for courage, bravery, patience, persistence and compassion. It is a festival of many stories, a festival of many lessons.
A Festival of Patience and Perseverance
The story of baby Jesus begins when Mary gave birth at a stable, alone, surrounded by animals. She was young and must have been scared. But she did not give up. Like most mothers, she would do anything for her child. She kept patience and pushed through. It was because of her patience and perseverance that the world received the most unique gift from God – his son. Her story tells us never to give up, even in the face of adversity, we should keep pushing through, and a time will come when we’ll move forward.
A Festival of Kindness and Compassion
The baby boy Jesus Christ grew up as a compassionate man who was known for his generosity. He treated everyone as an equal and with kindness and helped everyone in need. The festival of Christmas teaches us to be kind and compassionate to everyone we meet. Kindness and compassion are truly the spirits of this festival.
A Festival of Giving
There is a story about a poor woman who donated two copper pennies at a temple while wealthy, rich people donated larger sums of money. Jesus told his disciples that everyone else gave because they were wealthy but she gave out of poverty, she gave everything she had. Christmas encourages us to give back to society in whatever form we can. It can be by donating a sum of money or by simply volunteering to spend time with the elderly or orphans. You don’t have to be rich to give back and make someone’s day.
Give Meaningful Gifts This Christmas
The best gift of all, I feel, is the gift of telling them these stories and how they should relate to the story of Jesus Christ with their daily lives. They should understand that Christmas is just not only about receiving gifts but about giving gifts as well.
My kids are young and they would take some more time to understand the true meaning of these stories. But like we say, actions speak louder than words. So, after you are done telling them these stories, check out our list of meaningful gifts that you can involve your kids and family in and teach them these qualities by being the idol yourself.