Friday, January 4, 2013

save the mailman, save the world

About 10 years ago our house celebrated its 100th Birthday. Its a pretty unique house, as old houses tend to be.  It’s a pretty classic swiss chalet style house, almost an A frame.  So we have sloped ceilings in the upstairs rooms, and our attic space runs along the edge of the house on each side.  

We recently moved some boxes around on one side so that we could have a library. With the Christmas lights and bean bags, it easily became the favorite room of the house.  That is until we moved the boxes around in the attic on the other side of the house, threw in some carpet, tables, and a big box of Legos.

I am pretty sure we are never going to move now.  There is not a new house out there that can compete with a Lego room.  

We also have a mail slot in our front door.  This comes in super handy on cold days  when you don’t want to go outside, even for the mail.  Or when we go on vacation, it can just pile up in the entryway and we don’t have to worry.

It does mean, however that the mail man has to walk down the street, and along each persons walk way, up their steps to get to their mail slot.

Yesterday I was sweeping off our front porch, and noticed that we had quite a bit of ice on our stairs and sidewalk.  We usually come in and out of our back door to get to our car, so those steps have been clear all week.  The only person who regularly uses the front steps was the mailman.  

Suddenly I felt rotten.  I wondered what he thought of us, because clearly we had not been thinking of him.  Because sometimes being a Christian is about more than just what you believe, sometimes its about what you do.  How easy it could have been to clear those steps earlier, if only I had been thinking about the safety of our mailman. 

How do I show people I care? How do I show I trust in God? How do I spend my time and my money?

So that is my new years resolution:  To make what I do match up with what I believe. or what I believe to match up with what I do.

Who's with me?

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

i don't want to tell people santa is dead anymore

It was an emotional night. Polar Express as "family movie night" did not go over well. Why do they have to put a ghost, or spirit, or whatever in the middle of the movie?

I never want to watch that movie again.

Tears  were flowing.
And then it came.

I don't want to tell people Santa is dead anymore.

I felt like someone had splashed cold water in my face while I was sleeping.
What had we done? Had we stolen the magic from Christmas? In our quest for honesty had we unwittingly chosen cynicism over joy?
Our sweet little six year old boy was telling us that he wanted to believe.  In the magic.  In the wonder. In Santa Clause.  I don't want to sleep through any of these wonder years.

So, now, of course, we believe in Santa Clause.

We started out a little bit rocky.  What do we do now that we believe in Santa? There are a lot of variations to the story.  Which ones are "true?"  How do you reconcile that your brain knows that Santa Clause was a real person who lived long ago and brought gifts to children, but he was a person, so he died; but your heart wants to believe that somehow the magic still lives on?
So, as mom and dad, rather than have to prove he exists, we help with the imagination:
  • Wouldn't it be so cool to visit the north pole?
  • I wonder what elves are like?
  • Maybe this...
  • What if that...
We have yet to visit Santa this year, so we will see if he passes the test.  And instead of answering the question,

Is that the real Santa?

I am awake, and prepared.

What do you think? Do you think he is the real Santa?