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Mysteries and Knowledge December 21, 2009

Posted by michaelnjohns in Uncategorized.
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Consider if you will the mysterious Nazca art in Southern Peru. Similar markings are found elsewhere on earth. This is a mystery. And Santa Claus- this is a mystery too. My daughter asked if Santa was real or not, so I referred her to some websites to do research for herself. This was not a good idea because it only made her question more and become more frustrated. I had given her the information with the instruction, “You will have to decide for yourself whether or not to believe in him.”

Is there a Santa Claus? That’s like asking “Are there Aliens?” Depending on who you ask, the answer is yes, no, maybe, and I don’t know. Like the character Mulder on X-Files, I want to believe.

My daughter has chosen to “know” there isn’t a Santa Claus, but keep this a secret until Caleb “comes of age.” She accepted the quote I lifted from a Christmas joke somewhere. It goes, “There are three stages to a man’s life: Stage 1: I believe in Santa Claus. Stage 2: I don’t believe in Santa Claus. Stage 3: I AM Santa Claus.” To her, I am Santa Claus, and so is “Grandpa Claus,” and so is anyone else who brings her a present at Christmastime.

We think our son is still mystified by some of it, although in his heart I think he “knows” that Santa is Grandpa in person. We are looking forward to Christmas. And we will still set out cookies and milk for Santa Claus, and a carrot or 9 for the reindeer. And they will mysteriously disappear, leaving only a few crumbs and an empty glass of eggnog.

I want to believe because I want my children to keep the innocence of their youth as long as possible. I wish the world were a place of innocence and happiness, even if believing in Santa Claus is only for children. Can we have the knowledge of the real world, but still have the loving innocence of youth? And can we pass on both the knowledge AND the love? As it is written, “If I… can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge… but have not love, I am nothing.” I Corinthians 13:2 And if I am known for only one thing, may it be my love and not my knowledge. I want my children (and others around me) to look at my life and say, “He is really SOMETHING!”

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