Christmas stories. They spread delight, stretch the imagination and teach the importance of family, giving, caring, kindness and loving. So what better to read at this most joyous time of the year? And what better to uphold than the values taught in Christmas stories, by everyone from the Grinch to Ebenezer Scrooge.
The Birth of Jesus
The story which set off the celebration of Christmas is, of course, the birth of Jesus Christ. Many centuries ago, say, 2010 years or so, Jesus was born in a manger to Mary and Joseph. He was then visited by the likes of angels and wise men carrying presents.
The story is sweet at best; describing the humbled birth of the Christian Lord in a lowly stable surrounded by animals, and teaches such morals as being humble and having reverence for God.
A Christmas Carol
‘A Christmas Carol’ by Charles Dickens is a Christmas story which warms the heart. Beginning with old Ebenezer Scrooge – a character which has integrated himtself into daily language with the catchphrase “Bah, humbug!” – as a detestable man, and ends with a man who has been shown some inkling of the meaning of life.
He is visited by the three ghosts of Christmas: Past, Present and Future and shown the effects of his tyranny. He emerges a more compassionate man, the defining moment being when the ghost of Christmas yet to Come shows him his own death, and how he is not missed but by a family he treated most poorly.
The story teaches the importance of family, the perfect example being the Cratchit family, who, despite being poor and with nary a present, enjoy what they have. It also strongly condemns pettiness and the love of money, while encouraging kindness.
How the Grinch Stole Christmas
Everyone loves Dr. Seuss’s silly rhymes. This tale is a perfect Christmas story for Children. The Grinch is the modern Scrooge, but goes a step further than the old bag. He is hell-bent on ruining Christmas entirely for the lovely people of Whoville.
His hatred for Christmas stems from an early childhood experience, but his ways are changed by the simple compassions of a young girl and Christmas is restored to Whoville. The story is poignant and cheerful at the same time. The morals taught in this lovely story include bravery, cheerfulness and trust in human kindness. I loved the movie.
Other Christmas Stories
Some other popular Christmas stories include ‘The Nutcracker’, a story through the worlds of candy-land that will evoke pure delight in your children. There’s Rudolph the Red Nose Reindeer (1998), a story which teaches the importance of being yourself, even if you’re different from others. And finally: ‘A visit from St. Nicholas’, or ‘Twas the Night Before Christmas’, a poem which set the standard of Santa Claus for the western world.