Many variations of this simple, but wonderful idea exist, but I’ve never seen this concept presented in such a cool fashion! A friend of mine at work presented me with the book, “A Stocking for Jesus” to share with my seven year old. I loved the idea so much, that we went directly to the dollar store right after school/work to purchase a stocking for Jesus.
In the story, the child characters are helping mom and dad decorate the house for Christmas. As they hang their stockings on the mantle, one of the young ones asks if Christmas is Jesus’ birthday? The mother replies, “Yes, Dear.” Then the child proceeds to ask, “Then where is Jesus’ stocking?”
They purchase a beautifully embellished stocking, and hang it by the fireplace for all of the (spiritual) gifts that they will give to Jesus. Each time the children say extra prayers, help mom and day, or do an act of charity, they write it on a gift tag and put the tag in Jesus’ stocking. On Christmas morning, when everyone else is opening the gifts in their stockings, Jesus will have a stocking full of gifts as well.
I’ve also heard of doing the same thing with an empty manger and thin strips of yellow construction paper to represent hay. Kids write their good deeds on the “hay” and add it to the crib, so that by the time Christmas comes, the manger is nice and fluffy for the baby Jesus.
If you have young children, try one of these ideas. I find that children really respond to this kind of visual, and love to see the hay or the gift tags add up!
Here’s a picture of our new “Jesus Stocking” that we purchased inexpensively then embellished with glitter glue!Here’s what the book looks like. It’s by Suzanne Middendorf Arruda and published by Pauline Kids.