A Child-Like Faith
This past Saturday, our entire family rode The Polar Express in Williams. It was a wonderful experience to watch our grandchildren ride a train for the first time and to hear the Polar Express story read by its author, Chris Van Allsburg. During moments of the story I found myself shedding some tears. As I racked my brain trying to figure out why, I realized it was the unintended hidden message of the story.
The main character in the movie, a child about 9 or 10, is struggling with belief in Santa Claus. On Christmas Eve, the boy skeptically goes to bed knowing that Santa will not show up at his house, though he wants to believe that he will. The rest of the movie centers on this child’s ride on The Polar Express and his inability to hear the ringing of sleigh bells. As he is staring at the reindeer wanting to hear the sleigh bells ring, one falls off and rolls to his feet. He picks up the bell and shakes it next to his ear still unable to hear it. He then begins shouting that he wants to believe and ultimately winds up hearing the sleigh bell.
Flash forward to the next morning at his house and he opens a gift from Santa, which ends up being that sleigh bell. The story ends with the voice-over, stating that his sister and friends could hear it for a short time growing up, but they, too, quit hearing it when they got older. He, on the other hand, could still hear it and he still believed.
We talk about the child-like faith that Christ wants. We talk about Jesus and his love for the children. We also see how God does not use the wise, but the foolish for His kingdom purposes. I wonder how many of us as adults have lost our child-like faith in God? I wonder how many of us boast in our “Godly wisdom” when we should be boasting in the Lord? When Santa visited your home this past week, did you watch your children with amazement as they took in the “magic” of Christmas? Think about your spiritual life – do you experience that same “magic?”
My prayer for everyone this coming year is that you would rediscover your child-like faith in Jesus Christ as both Lord and Savior, and become foolish enough to trust in God for your every need. And if God bestows upon you the great privilege of becoming a grandparent, don’t worry about crying – it’s an eye opening effect!
Merry Christmas, Happy New Year, and may God bless you and your family this season.