My littlest, Jake, just turned 4 last week. He also went to VBS this summer for the first time. He had a great time, learned some songs and learned that the “Rescuer’s Mission was to seek and to save the lost”. Unfortunately, he got a bit confused as to who the Rescuer is. So what do I hear last week? “Mommy, Santa Claus died for us!”
I can totally understand. I mean, at 4 who’s the biggest, coolest guy around? Santa Claus! He’s fat, jolly and brings toys to all the good little girls and boys. So perhaps the confusion of Santa Claus and the Savior who takes away the sins of the world is plausible. I just remember looking at him with the deer in the head lights look. My thought was, Where did he hear that!? And then it hit me, he never heard it. His little brain was trying to remember who died for us and Santa Claus was his reference point.
“No baby, Santa didn’t die for us. Jesus died for us.”
“He DID die for us. He’s dead!”
“Well, certainly St. Nicholas is dead, but he did not die for our sins. Jesus dies for our sins.”
“Santa Claus didn’t die for us?”
“No, honey. Jesus did.”
It’s been a couple of days since the first conversation, and I’ve had to repeat it several times, but I think I’m finally untangling the cobwebs in his little mind. He’s stopped asking if Santa died for us and instead, puts quite plainly, that Santa didn’t die for us. I’m hoping in the next week, we will have it firmly fixed who really did sacrifice Himself for the remission of sins.