Sunday, December 19, 2004

The Meeting

The young imagination can grasp the impossible. So believing in Santa is easy. When I was a child, the world was full of wonder. Everything was magical. Colors, sounds, shapes, and even smells fascinated me. In fact, I think I liked some toys because of the way they smelled. I remember one store smelled like incense (this was the 60s). That smell always made the store seem a bit mysterious. Some people’s home smelled like children were not aloud to play there. I used to play at one friend’s house who was Italian. As his mom cooked, their house smelled like families were important.

The childlike imagination is rich in associations and wonder and faith. Yet as we grow, we often loose that wonder of simple things. Soon we fail to notice the wonder around us as we plan tomorrow’s schedule or review today’s events. Scientifiic laws explain away the fancies of childhood (like why birds fly and we don’t). We see the grass as green due to light and pigmentation. The sun dissappears from view because of the rotation of the earth.

Faith in God can restore the childlike appreciation of the world. Faith doesn’t seek to do away with scientific laws, but rather, it suggests that beneath those laws is a will. The will of a Supreme, loving Creator. So we may explain the details of green, but faith says that ultimately the grass is green because a divine will wanted it green. There is an active will of a loving Creator behind every man-made explanation. God wills the Sun to shine and it does. God willed for you to exist and you do.

When we see the world through this lens, we realize the absolute wonder that we even exist. God desired you to be here this day. And somehow, in the mystery of His great love, He gave us the freedom to gaze in wonder at His creation or to ignore Him altogether.

As you watch the excitement of children this season, may the excitement and wonder of faith come to life within your own heart.

The Meeting

“Oh , look Mom!
I think it’s him.
Can we stop? Please, please. Can we stop?”

Standing in line,
My wet hands hands are jumbled in anticipation.

This is the “real” one.
At least I’m pretty sure.
Just look at his stomach.
That’s no pillow.
And that beard, it’s real too.
Not some cotton on elastic.

Oh, great.
I’m next.
My heart is pounding.
I’ve never, …

Met the “real” one.

Quick, review my list:
a scrumpled notebook paper with pencil markings.
I hope he can read it.
Let’ see. Cross out number 3 and 7.
Can’t sound too greedy.
Put a star by 1 and 5. These are the most important.

It’s my turn!
He’s so big.
Giant hands gently swoop me into his lap.
Look at those boots. Yep, those are real.
Boy, he looks old. I bet he’s over a 1,000 years old.

“Uh, uh thanks.
Yes, I want a, a”

deep breath.

“A train set that lights up and whistles.
Oh, yes. I promise I would be careful.
Oh wait!
Here’s my list.
You can, uh
Bring me, uh
Anything you want.
Thank you Santa.”

Wow! I finally met him.
Boy he sure smelled good.

by alan douglas floyd


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