My kids stopped celebrating Christmas, What is the proper response?Holidays
Today, we are planning our December calendar, and I can’t help but think how much our lives have changed over the years. Ever since my husband and I got married in December of 1993, he has always had an issue with Christmas. Each year, he would ask, “what does a decorated tree have to do with Christ, why do we give gifts to each other and go into debt to celebrate Christ’s birth, and how do we know this is his birthday?”
Year after year, his questions challenged what I had been taught all my life about December 25th. But, it wouldn’t be until our children began asking the same questions and more starting in 2008 that we really began to seek God for answers on how He wanted us celebrate Him and worship Him.
If you are a regular reader, you know that over the years, our family slowly let go of what we believe are pagan ways of worship and began doing Bible things in Bible ways.
One of the first things we let go of was Christmas. In the early years, we continued to observe Christmas with our Sunday church, and our relatives but didn’t celebrate it at home. But the more we studied the more convinced we became that we just could not participate in Christmas anymore.
We are very blessed that both our families, after the initial shock of us telling them we would not be doing anything in the name of Christmas anymore, have been very supportive of our choice. But I have learned a lot over the years, and I would like to share some ideas of how to make relationships work between Christmas observes, and non-Christmas observes.
In the first few years after we stopped going to our relatives for Christmas celebrations, grandparents were not sure how to handle giving grandkids gifts. We also were uncertain. Both our mom’s came up with the idea of grandma day or family celebration day. Here are some ideas of how to make it work.
First, respect each other. If you are the one not celebrating Christmas, be plain spoken and clear about what you are willing to do and not do.
Say things like, “We are happy to come to a family dinner as long as it is not in the name of Christmas, and there is no Christmas activities involved.”
If you have children discuss the difference between what you do and what others do. Tell your kids, grandpa has a Christmas tree up at his house, we don’t agree with putting up a tree, but it is his house, and we respect him and his home. We do not need to say things like, “oh yuck, grandpa has a Christmas tree.”
Make a plan to talk to family, friends, and co-workers in a none judgmental environment about why you do not do Christmas, and that you just want to be respected, and that you will also show them respect.
Grandparents, aunts, uncles, and others want to give you and your children gifts, and they are buying them at this time of year. Let them know the boundaries. At our house, we ask that the gifts not be brought over on December 24 or 25th. We also ask that they are not called Christmas gifts. We also make it clear that we are not exchanging gifts at this time. We want it to be clear that we have not bought them gifts.
If your loved one is no longer celebrating Christmas, and you are concerned it is because they joined a cult, or lost their faith, then ask to have a time to discuss their decision with them. Prepare ahead of time to ask important questions, like, Do you still believe in Jesus as the Messiah? Do you believe in the Bible as the only true Word given to us from God? Is there anything else different about what you believe? When you ask these questions don’t assume they have lost their way, rather, be open to hearing their answers.
When we first stepped away from Christmas, we went far to the right. We didn’t do anything that might look like it was Christmas. But in more recent years, we realize that there is nothing wrong with baking cookies in the winter, or having a large family gathering in the winter, there is no sin in placing lights up in the dark months of winter (I will say I have a rule no lights on trees).
In fact, because the whole world stops and shuts down on December 25th, it is a great day to get together as a family. December is a slow work time for most of our family, and it is a great time do things as a family. Skiing, sledding, baking, and more.
Our family has started a tradition a few years ago called Buddy day. Often we have Buddy Day on December 25th. It has nothing to do with Christmas, and it isn’t a Christmas alternative. It is actually just a fun family day. We started it because our family is very large and growing and we wanted to be intentional about building relationships. Buddy day is when we get together and have a family fun day, and everyone draws a new buddy for the following year. You and your buddy prayer for each other, send each other encouraging notes, and maybe buy special gifts or go on special outings throughout the year. so, on Buddy Day, you finish your year with a buddy, and start a new year with a new buddy.
When I was a kid I heard that Jehovah’s Witnesses were hypocrites, because they said they didn’t celebrate Christmas, but they still had get togethers and sometimes gave their children gifts around Christmas time. I actually don’t know if that is true. But, I can tell you that we don’t have an issue with gift giving, family gathering together, or other activities that might look like Christmas, as long as they are NOT actually Christmas.
To us, Christmas is a pagan holiday originally meant to worship created things, like the Sun, rather than the Creator, Yehovah, so we do NOT want to observe or say it is about Christ, our Messiah and Redeemer. This is a violation of God’s commandment, to Worship Him alone, in the way He tells us to worship Him.
So, we do not want to even give the appearance of celebrating this false day of worship. But, decorating our house in the winter is not about Christmas, putting up lights outside is not about Christmas, baking goodies and treats is not about Christmas, having friends and family over is not about Christmas, UNLESS IT IS.
As for me and my house it is NOT about Christmas and it never will be.
I am grateful that our relatives respect our beliefs and though they do not agree with us, we can all seek Truth and Know that if we seek it with all our heart, it will be found.
I hope this winter you stay warm and grow closer to your Creator and Redeemer.
Written by Katie
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We are Bible believing, scripture only people. We love to learn about the Hebrew roots of our faith. We believe it is important to not add or subtract from the Divine Word of God. The compiled scriptures that agree with one another and have no contradiction is the 66 books of what is commonly referred to as the Christian Bible, or the Holy Bible.
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