So, we don’t do Santa, but we have decided to allow the giving of gifts, and even in the giving of those gifts at Christmas, we want to point them to Christ.

Giving (Just) Three Gifts

We’ve chosen to guide our gift-giving through the giving of three gifts. We also want to use the actual giving of the gifts to teach about the Christmas story. So, just as the wise men brought Jesus meaningful gifts, we give gifts with meaning as well.

And going into the house they saw the child with Mary his mother, and they fell down and worshiped him. Then, opening their treasures, they offered him gifts, gold and frankincense and myrrh. (Matthew 2:11 ESV)

A Gift of Fun

One gift is simply something they will enjoy. I am not against giving big gifts to our kids, but I would rather leave those “big-ticket” items to be for their birthday. In other words, we don’t spend a lot of money on this gift.

A Gift of Meeting

“Then the LORD said to Moses, “Take fragrant spices—gum resin, onycha and galbanum—and pure frankincense, all in equal amounts, and make a fragrant blend of incense, the work of a perfumer. It is to be salted and pure and sacred. Grind some of it to powder and place it in front of the ark of the covenant law in the tent of meeting, where I will meet with you. It shall be most holy to you. Do not make any incense with this formula for yourselves; consider it holy to the LORD.” Exodus 30:34-3

The second gift is something that will encourage them in their walk with Christ; something they will use to meet with the Lord. For my little ones, it may be a children’s Bible, or a Bible story board-book. As they get older, and can read on their own, the options will open up quite a bit. My hope is that this will become the gift that they treasure more and more as they grown in their relationship with God.

A Gift of Gold

Our children get a set amount of money and get to give a present to Jesus, through giving to others. As they get older, we want them to have more ownership of this, and choose for themselves how they want to give back to Jesus (there will also probably be a way for them to earn the money they give.) For now, we’ll stick with online giving options. Gift-a-Verse through OneVerse, and the gift catalogue from World Vision are probably the two we will use.

They also get a gold ornament, as a keepsake for the gift given to Jesus. I pray that they will grow to treasure these ornaments, and use them one day to carry on the tradition of giving to Jesus each Christmas.

I’d love to hear how you do gifts in your house. Leave a comment and share your ideas for using gift-giving to point our kids to Jesus!


6 replies
  1. steph
    steph says:

    Hello there! I love the honesty in your blog and thank you for bein such a blessing 🙂 As for how we do Christmas, well it is new our oldest is 4 and we have our most recent is 2 months old. So our traditions are just starting. My husbands family does not celebrate at all and my family went huge. Santa a ton of gifts it was nuts. We only started following Christ a couple years ago and the first couple years felt convicted to do nothing. No tree, no gifts treat it as just another day. But this year we felt that we could use this holiday as most Christians do and keep the focus on Christ and what he calls us to do. We do not do Santa nor give a lot of gifts so its good to hear how you do gift giving it helps figure out how to make a gift meaningful and keep ourselves focused on those in need not ourselves.

    • Katie
      Katie says:

      Thanks for sharing Steph! There is no “right” way to do this, but Christmas is a great chance to make much of Jesus and have fun with the kids at the same time. Our oldest is 6, and Christmas has looked a bit different each year. It is fun to see how our traditions grow.

  2. Lara
    Lara says:

    Katie, great ideas! We do three gifts too but ours aren’t as thoughtful as yours. I definitely don’t think there is a right or wrong with the gift giving thing. I think as with most grey areas it is an attitude of the heart. Hugs, friend.

    • Katie
      Katie says:

      Yes, a great point, Lara!

      It is all about if our hearts our turned to Jesus. That is what He wants the most, our worship!

  3. Kim
    Kim says:

    Hi Katie,
    I love your ideas! I believe I will adopt one or two. 🙂
    My husband and I give 3 gifts as well. We categorize them as a want, a need, and a give. We allow our children to have a say in what they get (A Want). We want them to have something that will benefit them spiritually and developmentally (A Need). We also want them to learn the importance of giving and serving, so we are teaching them lessons on, “it is better to give” (A Give).
    We have made an intentional decision to show our kids (in every way we can) that the real value in life is not found in materialism, but rather that it is found in the One who is greater and provides for us in all our wants, needs, and gifts.

    • Katie
      Katie says:

      “The real value in life is not found in materialism, but rather that it is found in the One who is greater and provides for us in all our wants, needs, and gifts.”

      Love it! Great ideas, Kim!


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