Will the Real Santa Please Kneel

On the center table of our home is a figurine of Santa kneeling down and worshiping Jesus. It was the one thing I wanted from my childhood. My mom promised it to me as a little boy. To me, it summarizes the role Santa plays in our home. He is a part of Christmas, but he is subservient to Jesus. Over on Kidology.org we have a thread the gets action ever December: How to answer Kids questions about Santa. I invite you to chime in! My story is a funny one, because in my home, we enjoyed Santa – but not only did I not “believe” in Santa, I didn’t know any kids actually believed in him until my first Christmas as a children’s pastor! I found out in the most horrible way. Teaching on the “true meaning of Christmas” in kids church I must have mentioned that Santa wasn’t real… (well, he isn’t!) I didn’t intend any harm to children, it wasn’t the point of my lesson, I also said it wasn’t presents or lights or snowmen or trees! I don’t even remember exactly how it came up! Maybe I was asked by a child. But Monday morning I…

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Jimmy Jim Says TRY JESUS!

Don’t Like Green Eggs and Ham? Jimmy Jim says TRY JESUS! JESUS LOVE YOU! I’m Jimmy Jim! JESUS LOVES YOU! Will you accept Him? That Jimmy Jim! That Jimmy Jim! I do not like that Jimmy Jim! Do you know Jesus? Do you know Him? Would you like to accept Him? I do not want to be a Christian, Jimmy Jim! I do not want to accept Him! Would you accept him here or there? I would not accept him here or there. I would not accept him anywhere. I do not want to be a Christian. I will not accept him, Jimmy Jim. Would you accept him in a house? Would you accept him with a mouse? I will not accept Him in a house, I will not accept Him with a mouse. I will not accept Him here or there, I would not accept Him anywhere. I do not want to be a Christian, I will not accept Him, Jimmy Jim. Would you accept Him in a box? Would you accept Him with a fox? Not in a box, Not with a fox. Not in a house, Not with a mouse! I would not accept Him here or…

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Bastian Christmas Letter 2009

Here is the Bastian Christmas Letter 2009: Dear Family & Friends, It’s hard to believe, but it was during Christmas last year that I said to Sara, “by this time next year, we won’t be in Illinois.” And here I am, writing to you from Colorado, looking out my window at prairie, cattle & mountains! It was mostly wishful thinking at the time – but a brush with death in April made the idea of moving to Colorado a firm plan! After a big magic show Easter weekend, I felt some chest pain and went to the ER hoping to be told I was fine. Instead, I had a stent put in my heart! That brush with death (and the lightening strike in May) focused my resolve to make what mattered most matter now! I read on a blog a quote by Andy Stanley that I could not get out of my head, “Everyone ends up somewhere, few end up there on purpose.” So here we are – on purpose, loving our new home, in a new setting, and a fresh start in a new place! Sara and Luke seem to be enjoying our new surroundings. Luke loves his new…

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Baby Manny the Reason for the Season

You gotta love those ad lib moments that become memorable and meaningful! At a family advent event I was speaking at this month, my theme was the name Immanuel and the significance of “God with us.” My ever-present helper, Gus from ChildrensMinistryPodcast.com, suggested that maybe Mary and Joseph nickname Jesus “Baby Manny” – short for Immanuel. I’m not so sure about that – but the kids got a kick out of it. While I doubt “Baby Manny” will catch on as a name for the baby in the manger, isn’t it wonderful to be reminded that the awesome and powerful Creator of the universe desires to have a close and intimate, even familiar, relationship with us? I think the Almighty God, who once said we could call him Abba Father, or “Daddy,” wouldn’t mind his son being called “Baby Manny” if it endeared us to Him more. This Christmas, don’t let the hustle and bustle of the season distract you from the Child who cries for your attention. After all, Baby Manny is the Reason for the Season! He is God with Us! (This is the intro to the Kidology Newsletter this week, read the entire newsletter online)

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Christmas Lights Guy

I rarely post something I got in an e-mail forward, but I loved this: Here is the text of the e-mail: (source unknown) I had to take him down after 2 days. I had more people come screaming up to my house than ever. Great stories. But two things made me take it down. First, the cops advised me that it would cause traffic accidents as they almost wrecked when they drove by. Second, a 55 year old lady grabbed the 75 pound ladder almost killed herself putting it against my house and didn’t realize it was fake until she climbed to the top (she was not happy). By the way, she was one of many people who attempted to do that. My yard couldn’t take it either. I have more than a few tire tracks where people literally drove up my yard. It was fun while it lasted Hope you get a kick out of it too! I thought it was pretty creative, but can totally see why the poor guy had to take it down! It’s something I’d do but my wife would make me take it down long before the police would get a chance too! Merry…

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