Confession time. I recently watched The Polar Express for the first time with my boys and I have to admit that I found myself in tears during a few scenes. As I racked my brain trying to figure out why I was crying, I realized it was the unintended hidden message of the movie. For those who have yet to see the movie, I want to warn you that I am going to spoil it for you at this point so stop reading and go watch the movie.
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 movie 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 (Mt. 18:3-4). We talk about Jesus and his love for the children (Mt. 19:14). We also see how God does not use the wise but the foolish (1 Cor. 1:20-31) 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 (1 Cor. 1:31)? If Santa visits your home, watch your children with amazement as they take in the “magic” of Christmas. Then think about your spiritual life–do you experience that same “magic?”
My prayer for everyone this Christmas 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. Merry Christmas and may God bless you and your family this season.