Alex makes the Christmas season better

Published 3:40 pm Sunday, December 28, 2008

My son is getting older, but he’s still at the age where he so looks forward to Christmas that you can’t help but get excited with him.

Alex will be six-years-old when Santa Claus makes his annual trip to my house Wednesday night or early Thursday morning. He has been talking about it non-stop for more than a month.

He is, of course, excited to wake up and see what is under the tree and to find out what kind of presents he has received from me, his mother, his grandparents and others. After all, he’s a six-year-old, so he should be excited.

I’m proud of my son. Despite whatever personal differences have arisen between his mother and I, so far we have brought him up to be a good boy. We get compliments constantly about his good behavior and his manners. That was something that was important to both of us from the day he was born.

One of the things I am most proud of however, revolves around Christmas. As much as my son loves Santa Claus and the presents, he is adamant that this time of year is about the birth of Jesus Christ.

The child has been in church since the first or second Sunday of his life. He goes with his mother a lot of the time because that is the church he has grown up in. He also goes to church with me and my wife during certain weekends.

As we have joint custody of our child, Alex’s mother and I will each take some of the credit for his knowledge about how important a holiday this is. Also, I will give a lot of credit to those who have taught him at Center Grove Baptist Church, Bethel Assembly Christian Academy and other places. Some of the credit should also go to my brother, Scott, who is a pastor and has been a major influence in my son’s life.

My son is proud of the fact that he celebrates Jesus’ birthday and he thinks it is the reason we should celebrate. I am pretty sure that if you ask him to choose between celebrating the birth of the Savior and Santa Claus, he would choose Jesus every time.

I’m proud of the fact that he has learned what he has been taught and even prouder of the way he has taken that to heart. Celebrating Christmas for the right reason is part of who my son is and that makes Christmas all the more special for his family.

One change for us this year is that we’re attending a Christmas Eve service for the first time. My wife, Lyndal, is a big believer of Christmas Eve service and we are incorporating her belief into our family traditions. I’m looking forward to being able to share that service with my son. It is probably the most excited I’ve been about a Christmas event in a long time.

As you reflect on your Christmas, I hope that your children also remember the true meaning of Christmas. I hope you delight in them as I do in my son. If you do, tell them – even if they act like they don’t, they’d love to hear it.

From my family to yours, we wish you all the quiet joys of a peaceful Christmas season.

Thadd White is Sports Editor and Staff Writer of the Roanoke-Chowan News-Herald. He can be reached at 332-7211 or via email at