It’s Day 4 of 12 Days of Christmas Giveaways!
If you’re just joining in, catch up with us by starting with Day One here.
My guest today is my friend, author, speaker, and just about the sweetest woman in the world, Jeannie Cunnion. She has kids whose ages range from the potty training stage to soon the drivers training age! Check out her creative idea to do with children below!
It was early in my parenting, probably right around the time our three boys were about 6, 4, and 2, that I watched them tear through packages and barely finish opening one gift before they were tearing through the next, and I realized I wasn’t giving my kids what they really wanted for Christmas. While I loved seeing their faces light up as they raced down the stairs to find endless packages, filled with most of the things they’d asked for, I also found myself quickly frustrated by New Years day when they could barely recall most of the gifts they’d just been given. Yes, all of that stuff they absolutely had to have to be happy now sat abandoned at the bottom of the toy box, to be remembered no more.
They were learning early that there is nothing in this world that can satisfy us like the love of Jesus. Of course they wouldn’t have said it that way, but all of that “stuff” doesn’t bring us joy- or real, lasting joy, at least. It only brings some temporary thrill. It was then I that knew I wanted to give my kids more. So much more. But not a material kind of more.
I wanted to give my kids a Christmas that is centered around the miracle, not the material. I wanted them to remember the anticipation, the thrill, the joy of celebrating the Christmas miracle.
Love was born. Christ has come. The greatest gift has been given. We can tear up the naughty and nice lists. Jesus has done for you and me what you could never do for ourselves. We now have God’s unfailing and forever love. So come. Come let us adore Him!
So one thing we began doing with our kids is a birthday party for Jesus on Christmas Eve. Instead of putting out the list of the things we want Santa to give us because we have been “good enough” we bake a cake and sing happy birthday to Jesus. We blow out the candles and thank Him for leaving Heaven to come to earth to rescue us and redeem us.
Well, several years ago, after the candles were blown out and my boys were licking the frosting off their cake, my son Brennan turned to me with a curious face and asked, “But Mom, if it’s Jesus’s birthday, where are His presents? What did we give to Him?” What a privilege it was to tell my son, “What Jesus wants is our love, our trust, our hearts. He wants us. That is the best gift we could give Jesus.”
Even as our boys have grown, and we’ve added one more little guy to the crew, our kids, who now range in age from 14 to 2, enjoy this sweet tradition as a way to keep our focus on what we truly celebrate when we wake up on Christmas morning.
Have you–or someone you know–ever held a birthday party for Jesus on Christmas? What other things could you do to hold such an event? Let us know in the comments.
Day 4 Giveaway
Jeannie is giving away a copy of her book, Mom Set Free: Find Relief from the Pressure to Get It All Right, along and her Bible study book, Mom Set Free: Good News for Moms Who are Tired of Trying to be Good Enough.
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