Monday, December 22, 2014

Get rid of your Elf on the Shelf!

Yes, we are one of those families that participate in the craziness that is the "Elf on the Shelf." At first it was entertaining to see the boys run around the house looking for Randy the Elf. We would even admit that it was entertaining on some weird level to watch the boys freak out when we pretended like we were going to pick Randy up and move him. We have woke up in a panic praying the boys didn't wake up before us all because we forgot to move the elf the night before. And yes, we've been those parents that had to make up some excuse for why the elf didn't move the night before. If we had small kids again, say 2-6 years old, I'd gladly do it all over again just to see the joy in their eyes. But I have to admit that I'm glad my two are aging out of the Elf phase, although I don't believe Misty is as happy as I am. I'm just glad that we will soon be getting rid of our Elf on the Shelf.

For some people they don't need to wait for their kids to grow up to get rid of their elf. They need to do it right now. You heard me right. Some people need to get rid of their elf right now and not use it again. Here's my reasoning on making such a claim. Your elf on the shelf is like most everything else in life, it's a tool to help teach and train your children. If the only use you have for having an elf on the shelf is to get your kids to behave and have some fun during the month of December, then you're missing a great opportunity to teach your kids about the real reason for Christmas. As parents we should take every opportunity we can to point our children towards God (Deuteronomy 6:7). We should use every day opportunities, like riding down the road or sitting down for a meal, to teach them valuable lessons about faith. With Christmas being solely about the birth of Jesus as the Savior of the world, how can we not use a silly game like Elf on the Shelf to point our children towards the true meaning of Christmas. I know some will say you shouldn't mix the secular views of Christmas and the
traditional religious view of Christmas. To them I'd say, "Why not?" How can we not use something that has so captivated the hearts and minds of our children to point out the reason we celebrate Christmas. If we don't use it from time to time to point to Jesus as the focus of Christmas, then we miss a great teaching opportunity. Plus we make the sole focus of Christmas about getting gifts because they've been good. I think the easiest way to put it is this. If you aren't willing to use your elf to lead your kids just a little closer to Christ, then you need to get rid of your Elf on the Shelf.

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