Yes, Virginia, there is a Santa Claus.
He is the embodiment of the unconditional love
for which every child (and grownup) longs.
One whose all-seeing eye
sees us when we're sleeping
and watching over us
with guardian angels at the ready.
He is that One who knows when we're awake
and with uninterrupted knowledge
nudges us from behind
with a still small voice
indicates the way we should take.
He is that One unlike any other
who knows if we've been bad or good
because nothing we think or do
can escape His holy awareness.
This Santa of which I speak
cannot simply wink
at our selfish pursuits and sinful behavior.
His penchant for justice prevents cheap grace.
But because of His gift-giving nature,
this One who loves the world
refused to simply threaten us
with coal in our Christmas stockings.
This Giver of all good gifts
refused to remain distant
but dirtied Himself
by descending from the top of the world
through the chimney of our Heaven-reaching efforts
into our less-than-perfect world.
Taking the soot of our shame upon Himself,
this most benevolent lover of humanity
clothed in the red of His own blood
gave us the best gift we could ever imagine.
Yes, Virginia, there is a Santa Claus!
But those who know Him
know Him by another name.
He is loved by children of all ages of every nation.
He is the proof of the Creator's self-giving generosity
who once declared,
"Let the little children come to me.
Do not forbid them.
For to such as these belongs the Kingdom of God!"
Yes, Virginia, His name is Jesus!