8 Christian Elf on the Shelf Ideas

Looking for fun, creative, EASY Christian Elf on the Shelf ideas that keep the focus on Jesus? Start here!

 8 Christian Elf on the Shelf Ideas

Does your family participate in Elf on the Shelf?

(For those of you who aren’t familiar with the concept, Elf on the Shelf is a small doll that keeps an eye on your children’s behavior during the day and then reports back to Santa every night. 

They’re pretty much everywhere this time of year, with tons of elf on the shelf ideas pinned allll over Pinterest. Plus, if you check out the various elves on Amazon, you can even choose the gender and skin color you prefer.)

*This post contains affiliate links, which means if you make a purchase, I may make a small commission at no additional cost to you.


We’ve had an Elf on the Shelf for a few years now, and the kids love it! 

I never have to pry my kids out of bed in December — they always get such a kick of jumping out of bed in the morning, running through the house to find the elf, and seeing what kinds of silly things he’s up to each day.

And while some people worry that traditions like Santa or the elf take the spotlight off of Jesus and add to a consumerist culture, the good news is that it doesn’t have to.

You can actually create a “Christian Elf on the Shelf” that reinforces the true Christmas story and to points your kids TO Jesus. This is what we do, and we love it!

And with these 8 Christian Elf on the Shelf Ideas, you can do the same!


** Alternately, you may also want to check out these Christian Elf on the Shelf Alternatives


8 Easy Christian Elf on the Shelf Ideas


Elf Jesus letter


1. Elf on the Shelf Writing a Letter to Baby Jesus


Instead of (or in addition to!) having your kids write a letter to Santa asking for more “stuff” this year — have them write a letter to Jesus thanking them for all the things he has provided for them already. Your elf can deliver the blank letter for your children to fill out during the day, and then drop it off to Jesus on his way back to the North Pole after the kids are asleep.

Depending on your children’s writing abilities (and the amount of time you want to spend on it), you could have them write out a full letter on a blank piece of paper. Or make it extra cute and special by having them fill out the cute Letter to Jesus printable pictured below!

Elf on the Shelf Letter to Baby Jesus


Simply fill out your name+email below so I know where to send it! I’ll get it sent your way right away.


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8 Christian Elf on the Shelf Ideas


2. Christian Elf on the Shelf Worshiping Baby Jesus


The Wise men worship baby Jesus. The shepherds worship Baby Jesus. According to Luke 19:40, even rocks worship God. Why not your elf too?

One of the absolute easiest Christian Elf on the Shelf ideas — this one is perfect for those mornings when you need something clever and FAST! (I’m not the only one who forgets on occasion, right???)

Bonus points: You can even tell your kids that their elf probably doesn’t know the Christmas story and ask them to tell it to him. They’ll have a great time teaching their elf all about Jesus!


*By the way – How adorable is this Little People Nativity?? if you don’t have a kid-friendly nativity and you’re looking for one, this nativity is my absolute favorite


 8 Christian Elf on the Shelf Ideas


3. Elf on the Shelf Reading the Bible


Want your elf to set a good Christian example? Have him read the Bible! Once the kids find him, have everyone join him in reading the Christmas story aloud. OR if your children don’t already have a good kids Bible, you could have the elf bring them one as an early Christmas present.

We have and love the Little Words Matter Bible Storybook (pictured) for little ones ages 1-4, The Beginner’s Bible for kids ages 4-8, and the NIV Adventure Bible for kids ages 8-12, but of course any Bible will do!


* Related: 10 Non-Cheesy Christian Christmas Gifts for Kids


 8 Christian Elf on the Shelf Ideas


4. Elf on the Shelf Singing Hymns


Who loves singing hymns? Christian Elf on the Shelf does! And while this is one of the Christian Elf on the Shelf ideas that does take a little pre-planning (since you have to print off the sheet music), it’s still pretty easy and totally worth it.

I made this little hymnal per my oldest’s request by just printing out some online sheet music and putting it in a 3-prong folder. If your children wouldn’t recognize hymn sheet music, you can easily substitute a good kids’ worship CD or kids’ Christmas CD.


 8 Christian Elf on the Shelf Ideas


5. Elf on the Shelf Helping Out with the Housework


One common complaint people have about most Elf on the Shelf ideas is that creating all the messes and mischief that make Elf on the Shelf so fun causes a lot of extra work for mom. But the good news is — your Christian Elf on the Shelf can do the exact opposite!

Instead of your elf making messes, have your Christian Elf on the Shelf help clean up and get the kids to help clean up too. It’s a great way to teach your kids giving and selflessness. (Ha ha! Mom for the win!)

Trust me — this is one of those easy Christian Elf on the Shelf ideas you’ll use again and again and again. 🙂


 8 Christian Elf on the Shelf Ideas


6. Elf on the Shelf Telling Others About Jesus


Christian Elf on the Shelf witnessing to his toy friends? Why not! It sets a good example and is SUPER easy to set up – even if you almost forgot and need a great idea for the last minute.

Seriously, if you’re looking for easy Christian Elf on the Shelf ideas, it really doesn’t get much better than this!


 8 Christian Elf on the Shelf Ideas


7. Elf on the Shelf Memorizing Scripture Verses


Do your kids memorize Scripture verses? If not, your Christian Elf on the Shelf is a great way to introduce the idea! He can bring Christmas verses to help them remember the reason for the season, or just any verses you think would be meaningful or helpful for your family.

Want free printable Bible verses so you don’t have to write them out by hand? You can get a couple free sets of Printable Scripture Cards on my Subscriber Freebie page.


 8 Christian Elf on the Shelf Ideas


8. Elf on the Shelf Praying with a Prayer List


What do you and your children regularly pray for? Why not let Elf on the Shelf get in on the action! Make a list of things your children regularly pray for (or simply write each of your children’s names) and take a minute to pray for each one!


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The Elf on the Shelf Book

(Don’t have an elf? Get yours here!)


As you can see, these Christian Elf on the Shelf ideas are a great way to use a fun little tradition in a way that actually honors Jesus and puts the attention right back on him, where it belongs.


Does your family do Elf on the Shelf? What about a Christian Elf on the shelf? Share your best ideas in the comments section below! (We can always use more!)



Then be sure to check out these great Christian Christmas ideas as well:


 Christian Elf on the Shelf Alternatives

Christian Elf on the Shelf Alternatives


Christian Christmas Gift Ideas for the Whole Family

29 Christian Christmas Gift Ideas Your Whole Family Will Love


 29 Christian Christmas Gift Ideas Your Whole Family Will Love

10 (Non-Cheesy) Christian Christmas Gifts for Kids


10 Adorable Christian Christmas Crafts Your Kids Will Love

10 Adorable Christian Christmas Crafts Your Kids Will Love




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  1. Hi! We have the magic elf. He is a elf that tells about the birth of Jesus. Each day in December he reminds us what the season is all about. He prompts the kids to do acts of kindness. And the last few days he tells the story of Jesus’ birth. He is WAY cuter than the elf on the shelf. I wish more people knew about him!

  2. I LOVE these cute ideas! I was googling ideas because I just got this ADORABLE new Christian Elf on the Shelf alternative. It’s called the Shepherd’s Treasure! I just got the one I ordered in the mail and it’s so cute! It’s this little shepherd that goes on a quest to find Jesus during December! It came with a shepherd and Jesus doll! I found it at http://www.Theshepherdstreasure.com in case you want to check it out for your sweet family! The elf always creeped me out a bit! hehe! I’ll be doing some of your cute ideas with our shepherd this year!

  3. We have an Angel, that teaches us about the Fruit of the Spirit. When she leaves a gift she leaves extras so the kids can share with someone else. She also leaves craft supplies to make cards for others.

  4. Thank yo for the ideas! I used the Mary & Joseph from a child’s Nativity scene in a Sunday School class during the month of December. My idea is centered on M&J as they make their way to Bethlehem. This year they will Read the Christmas story, sing some Christmas hymns, memorize Scripture and write a letter to Jesus thanking Him for all He has done. Being Sunday school, I don’t have as many days to fill. I just set them out in a different place each Sunday and the kids come running to see what they are doing each week. The last Sunday before Christmas, I put Jesus out with them to form a simple Nativity scene. We may read the story or write the letters. I have not decided yet. I will definitely be using a few of your ideas!

  5. Love these ideas so far. I’m far too busy for huge ideas this season and need some inspiration and would be willing to pay for something personalized or kits pre-completed!

  6. We have an elf, but we’ve never done it the way the movie or books go…we’ve actually never read or watched them. We use ours as a way for our girls to help share the gospel & learn forgiveness like Jesus provides for us. If ours has fun & messes something up our girls talk to him about why that’s breaking the rules & they forgive her & help her by cleaning things up. We do a couple things you mentioned here…a good one we do is we leave a note & 3 bags and our elf asks our 3 girls to clean out their toys so that other children without as much can have some toys. Our elf always asks for tips about how to talk to her and her friends about Jesus and to share God with them. I love the idea of the prayer list & scripture memorizing….ours may bring a scripture each day or every other day. Thanks for the ideas!

    1. Hello, Callie! I am so glad you found some useful ideas for your Christian Elf on the Shelf. I like the idea you shared about the 3 bags. Christmas is a time to share, and this is a great way to share with those less fortunate.

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