Saturday, November 18, 2006

Here comes...Grace Claus?

It's a Christmas song we all know well: "Santa Claus is Coming to Town". Santa is a fun event for children, right? And that's why we think nothing of mixing the message of Santa Claus with the message of Jesus' birth, right? I mean, they are both about gifts, aren't they?

Let's take a look at the lyrics to this song:

You'd better watch out!
You'd better not cry!
You'd better not pout!
I'm telling you why,
Santa Claus is comin' to town.
He's making a list
and checking it twice.
He's going to find out who's naughty and nice.
Santa Claus Is Comin' To Town.


He sees when you are sleeping.
He knows when you're awake.
He knows if you've been bad or good.
So be good for goodness sake!

It actually sounds like someone to be afraid of--he's always watching me? I have to be good all the time because he knows if I am not? What if I make a mistake?

Again, we Christians participate in Santa Claus just as much as anybody. But is it really something that coincides with our Biblical beliefs? Receiving presents from Santa is dependent on whether we are good or bad--dependent on what we do. Yet we are taught that our God is a God of love and grace who gives to us simply because He loves us and not because we have earned what we receive.

Isn't it a mixed message we're sending? How can both messages fit together on the same day? Does anyone else find it as confusing as I do? I have to be good to receive presents from Santa and there isn't a grace clause (ha! no pun intended, but it gives me a good title for this posting!) when it comes to him, is there? It's either presents or coal; that's it.

Yet when it comes to God, He is all about grace. His love and gifts are never dependent on what we do. They are only dependent on His love for us.

So who would you rather visit you this Christmas? Santa Claus? Or Grace Claus?

1 comment:

Kevin O'Brien said...

Yes, Grace is a free unearned gift of God, and even Faith is a Grace, but "Faith without works is dead", so our conduct does become an issue, once Grace has redeemed us.

The mystery of Christmas is lost in so many songs and poems. Try this for something better ...

The Christ-child lay on Mary's lap,
His hair was like a light.
(O weary, weary were the world,
But here is all aright.)

The Christ-child lay on Mary's breast,
His hair was like a star.
(O stern and cunning are the kings,
But here the true hearts are.)

The Christ-child lay on Mary's heart,
His hair was like a fire.
(O weary, weary is the world,
But here the world's desire.)

The Christ-child stood at Mary's knee,
His hair was like a crown.
(And all the flowers looked up at Him,
And all the stars looked down.)

- "A Christmas Carol" by G. K. Chesterton