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Last night we put up our Christmas Tree, watched “Elf” and ate Spaghetti and Chocolate Poptarts for Supper. It was the first official Movie and Snack of the Season (if you’d like to see some other Christmas movie and snack combinations check out Vol. 1 and Vol. 2). This year I noticed something a little different about the movie that I’d like to share with you…
Once Buddy the Elf arrives in New York it’s obvious that he really stands out.
For one thing his pointy hat, bright green elf jacket and yellow tights are very different than what everyone else wears; but it’s more than just how he looks, he acts different too. He can make friends with anyone–the receptionist, an angry raccoon, or the girl in the Dr.’s waiting room.
Buddy is full of joy and hope. He isn’t turned off by his Dad’s angry disposition. He just keeps being himself…no matter what anyone else thinks. Buddy is really good at celebrating the little things too like jumping on the mattress, the World’s Best Cup of Coffee or revolving doors.
One of the scenes that I particularly loved this year was when Buddy called out the fake Santa. You remember? Buddy is SO excited to see Santa and then when Santa appears–it’s not really Santa but an impostor! He knows that it’s not the real Santa and tells Paul not to trust him…”He’s a liar and sits on a throne of lies”…
As Christians we are supposed to stand out!
We know up front that following Jesus goes against the grain of the this world. It’s costly but the rewards are more than the cost. We know that we’ll be challenged and persecuted for our beliefs. But just like Buddy the Elf we don’t give up because our joy comes from a different source. We’re able to SEE God working in the world and on the behalf of others; as a result we can celebrate all the little blessings because we know that “every good and every perfect gift is from above, and comes down from the Father (James 1:17)!
Another thing that we can take from this movie is the ability that we have to call out the lies… We have the Bible and the Bible is the real source of Truth. It’s how we learn to distinguish between the voice of God and all the other voices that tell us we aren’t good enough. When we hear those voices that aren’t from God we can recognize that they are the “fiery darts of the wicked one” (Ephesians 6:16) and use our shield of faith to extinguish his lies (See John 8:44).
Buddy was different, that much was obvious, but he didn’t let the rough streets of New York take away his joy and infectious spirit.
He shared that spirit with those around him and made the world a better place. He made others pause and notice those little things, he loved people as they were without an agenda and saw the good in them, and he embraced that which made him different.
As Christians we have the Spirit of the LIVING GOD living INSIDE OF US (1 Corinthians 3:16). And we have the joy and responsibility to share that Spirit with those around us. Just like the “spirit of Christmas” is infectious the Spirit of God is more so. I’ve heard it said that the saddest day of the year is December 26th. The Spirit of Christmas comes and goes with the turning of the calendar. But God is always present and active in our world. He doesn’t come and go with the turning of the calendar…He offers us love, joy, peace, and the biggest, best gift of all Eternal life!
May we remember that just like Buddy the Elf we were made to stand out in this world; not just at Christmas time, but all year long. Let’s not shy away from our God-given differences but embrace them and share them with the world, leaving the people and places we come into contact with better than we found them!
Until next time,