Most of you won't see the Finnish horror movie, Rare Exports, that focuses on the discovery of a frozen "Santa Claus" who, when thawed out... well, lets just say kids start disappearing. The original Santa was a bad dude - a supernatural being who rewards the good and punishes the bad. It's a crazy sounding story, but so are many of the things parents tell their kids about Santa today (probably without the bloodshed). Thankfully, Mark Driscoll has written a great article in the Washington Post on what we should tell our kids about Santa.
From the article,
We tell our kids that he was a real person who did live a long time ago. We also explain how people dress up as Santa and pretend to be him for fun, kind of like how young children like to dress up as pirates, princesses, superheroes, and a host of other people, real and imaginary. We explain how, in addition to the actual story of Santa, a lot of other stories have been added (e.g., flying reindeer, living in the North Pole, delivering presents to every child in one night) so that Santa is a combination of true and make-believe stories.
We do not, however, demonize Santa. Dressing up, having fun, and using the imagination God gave can be an act of holy worship and is something that, frankly, a lot of adults need to learn from children.
Mark's advice reflects the approach we have taken through the years in walking our four children through the holiday season. Head over to the Washington Post and read the whole thing.