Faith in Santa
It was the 25th of December, and Santa Claus was getting ready for Christmas, but this time, something was different. Santa had been traveling around every 25th of December for the past 1700 years, but he felt a little weak for the first time. Mr. Claus did not know what to do and hence left to seek the guidance of the Child of the Sun and Moon.
The Child of the Sun and Moon is the mentor of all Guardians of the Holidays. The Child protects the Santa Claus of Christmas, the Easter Bunny of Easter, the Pumpkin of Halloween, the Crescent of Eid, and many more festivals. As Santa reached the bright shrine of The Child, he kneeled and prayed,
"Oh, Child of Sun and Moon, I’ve come into your holy presence to seek revival. My body has been weak for many days, and the doctors have prescribed no herbs. I pray to you, please grant me a cure from this unholy disease."
After a minute of silence, the cracks in the shrine illuminated, and a voice echoed through the corridors of the shrine.
"Santa of Christmas, you certainly are weak, but it is not due to an illness. Your festival has arrived, and you must leave immediately. This time, rather than dropping the gifts off in the chimney, you will greet them on their doorstep, and you will find your answer there. I will speak to you then."
Santa took The Child's advice and immediately left with his faithful companion, Rudolph the Reindeer. The first house Santa visited was in North America at 9:30 p.m. It seemed like a warm, humble house. Santa knocked on the door and outran a child no older than seven, who seemed surprised when he opened the door.
"Ho! Ho! Ho! My child, Johnathan, you’re on the top of my nice list; have your gift!"
The child said, "But you’ve already come to my home once; see, you gave me this as a gift. I found it near the fireplace, but I’ll have this gift too! Daddy is calling me. Thank you, and Merry Christmas!"
Santa stood there in shock and thought, "Who is this impostor giving away MY gifts? I must rush to other houses and ensure these gifts are delivered!"
Santa visited all the houses in North America, and to his dismay, gifts were given away everywhere. He was shocked and confused by all the gifts left in his sleigh. He had an unusual idea: to give gifts to the children on his naughty list!
The first child on his naughty list was Dennis. As Santa reached his house, he observed that Dennis lived in relatively small, cold quarters. He knocked on the door, and a famished child came out. But as soon as he saw Santa, his face grew rosy and warm, and he started smiling. Santa was flattered by the innocent face but grew firm and asked,
"Ho! Ho! Ho! Dennis, you’ve been a very naughty boy. It says that you’ve stolen things now and then. May I know why?"
The child said in a guilt-ridden voice, "Oh, Santa, I lost my mother a few years ago, and my dad sometimes does not come home because he works day and night. Out of helplessness, I’ve stolen some apples and bread loaves. I promise that I have not stolen money or anything expensive. I’m sorry, Santa."
Santa grew teary and almost immediately gave him the gift. The child could not stop giggling and kept on thanking him. Santa was filled with guilt; he thought, "I can't believe this child sleeps almost every night famished, and I’ve put him on my naughty list just because he stole some food?"
Suddenly, Santa felt a little rejuvenated, as if some of him had been revived. He thought he might feel better if he gave out all the gifts. Santa set out on a long voyage, locating each and every child on his naughty list and giving them gifts. With each child he met, he understood why they were on the naughty list. Most of the children had to face helplessness or vulnerability. Little by little, Santa regained his strength, but his guilt rose too.
After giving out the final gift, Santa sat in his sleigh and left for the North Pole. Santa felt much healthier than before, but with all the guilt he carried, he could not stop crying. He kept thinking about how wrong it was to needlessly judge the children on the naughty list and not give them a blessing. Suddenly, a voice whispered into his ear,
"Oh, Santa, do not grieve mistakes; rather, celebrate the realization. If you were not to visit the children on your naughty list today, they'd have slipped off the string of hope. You felt weak because the children on your naughty list had almost given up on you. Our strength is defined by the people who put faith in us, and when their faith betrays them, their hearts crumble. Santa Claus of Christmas, you must have realized where you were erring. I wish you luck in your future endeavors."
Santa’s tears stopped falling, and a slight smile appeared. He felt highly comforted by The Child's words and promised the children of the world that he'd never let the spirit of Christmas fade away.