Although Elf is rising in the ranks very quickly, one of my favorite holiday movie moments is in A Christmas Story, when the dad finally gets his long-awaited delivery. Up until this scene, the dad is depicted as a quiet and surly fellow; a little on the grumpy side. I can kind of relate to him. But this all changes the moment his delivery arrives at the door.
The delivery is a “major prize” he won from entering a sweepstakes. The excitement builds as he brings this massive wooden crate through the front door. Spray painted across the box is written “fragile”, and he responds with the now classic line, “Fra-JEE-lay! Must be Italian!“. He desperately cries for a crowbar as this once reserved man becomes a boy. He opens it and frantically searches through the packing material, finally pulling out this grotesque table lamp shaped as a woman’s burlesque leg. The horror on his wife’s face is classic as he quickly plugs it in and places it in the front window, with pride for all the neighbours to see. Later in the movie something unfortunate “accidentally” happens to this cherished lamp. Fragile indeed.
The things that are most special to us are often quite fragile.
Recently we had two little ones in our home at the same time. One was a little cousin that had a sleepover at our house. The other was the one my wife cares for during the day. It has been quite a while since we had two little ones roaming through our house. It was a quick reminder with all the curiosity and toddling that goes on, constant supervision is absolutely necessary.
If we do not take care of the precious fragile things in our lives, harm may come to them or even worse. I believe that faith works very much the same way. The Bible tells us that spiritual life starts very small, much like the tiny mustard seed. But when it is tended to, watered and fed properly it can grow into something very substantial and strong.
Christmas is a season when people tend to be warmer to spiritual things. Something catches the eye and brings about wonder of things unseen. A Christmas Carol plays in a store or a Nativity scene on a front lawn can unexpectedly open the heart to spiritual realities that are all around us.
These moments are indeed quite fragile and left unattended, they can be lost or choked by life’s worries. The question is, if we give consideration in these moments, they can become something much more strong and substantial. When faith grows it becomes an anchor in our life which helps in times that are very troublesome. We find that what was once fragile now becomes a new source of strength. A new light to shine in the darkness.
So, how will you care for these fragile moments of faith this Christmas?