I’m going to make a confession…I believed in Santa Claus for a long time after my friends stopped. To be honest, I was afraid that I’d hurt my mother’s feelings if I said I didn’t believe anymore, but a part of me knew once I acknowledged it, things would change, and Christmas would never be the same again.
Thanks to spending my tender years each Sunday morning at the Fulbright Memorial Methodist Sunday School, I knew we celebrated Christmas because of Jesus’ birth, but it was Santa who brought the magic to Christmas!
Over my lifetime, I’ve encountered a lot of different ways families dealt with Santa. My close friends and relatives loved introducing their children to the idea of Santa, especially that first child. I think that’s when I understood that giving was better than receiving. I loved giving to my children. A few families we knew thought it was deceitful, declaring they’d never lie to their children about anything, beginning with Santa Claus.
You can believe what you like but you will never convince me that magic doesn’t accompany the man in the red suit, because I see it every year in the faces of the children who come to Navasota’s Home for the Holidays!
In the perfect world dreamed about by Dr. Martin Luther King and promised us by Jesus, people are not judged by the color of their skin. People just see people. You may laugh at what I’m going to say, but never do I come closer to that perfection as when the children come face-to-face with Santa Claus. It is a mixture of awe and love, that if bottled, could be the prescription for world peace!
The City has been blessed with some very good Santas who love what they do, and it shows. They exemplify what Santa is - patient, loving, gentle and consistent. Afterall, he does expect good behavior!
For those in close proximity, that magical connection between Santa and child is palpable. As each child shyly and gingerly climbed on his lap, or ran up and clasped their little arms around him, it reminded me of a song I sang so many times in Sunday School – “red and yellow, black and white, they are precious in His sight, Jesus loves the little children of the world” - and I strongly suspect, that Santa does too.
Unfortunately, the world can be a cruel and hard place for many children. Maybe it is deceitful to foster belief in a myth but for a few moments last Saturday, Navasota’s children felt the magic, the magic of Christmas – the magic of love!
Connie Clements is a freelance reporter and award-winning columnist. She writes feature news articles on a weekly basis and an opinion column as the mood strikes her.