Over the past few weeks, our family has been enjoying relaxed time together watching Christmas specials. Seems like there are hundreds to choose from these days, but we still like to incorporate some of the classics: The Grinch, Charlie Brown, Year without a Santa Claus, Frosty, Rudolph.
As I now sit down with my six and nine-year-old to watch these familiar favorites, I am brought back to my own childhood. I can vividly recall viewing these same shows (except with TV commercials) when I was younger.
Yes, there is something to be said about literally watching our own children experience these traditional holiday shows (through the eyes of a child) but this year, I have found more humor than nostalgia.
It’s comical to watch these with our kids because not only do my husband and I see what’s clearly impossible (Really, how could the Grinch’s sled not tip over the mountain?), or notice sections of poor quality audio (Why does it sound like the soundtrack on Rudolph is played on a dying record?), but now we get to chuckle at some of the lines we hear in the dialogue or songs.
There are some clever and funny things said in Christmas specials. The one that had us cracking up this year was in the movie “Jack Frost.” The evil villain, Kubla Kraus, sings his theme song about being king over a kingdom, but there are no people to rule over (“There’s the rub!”).
I know I have seen this less popular Rankin/Bass holiday special before in my childhood . . . so why didn’t I think this song was funny when I was younger?
Answer: Probably because I was not paying attention to this “boring” part of the show back then, and I had not yet read Shakespeare’s play “Hamlet”, and so I had no idea what “There’s the rub!” even meant.
As a child, we are only capable of a certain level of understanding. As adults, with more experiences, more knowledge acquired, and hopefully more wisdom gained, we should view life with greater comprehension and discernment.
The same is true with our faith. In the beginning of our walk with God, we learn the basics of Christianity. As we continue down our spiritual path, we should be moving forward with increased understanding--building off the beginner foundation and raising our awareness of what’s deeper.
We are to advance beyond elementary teachings and move forward in maturity.
I must have heard the lines in some of those Christmas specials at least forty times now in my life. But the older I get, the more times I watch and listen to these holiday classics--I have an increased memorization of the script and a deeper appreciation for the context of what is happening.
Now apply that to Scripture . . . the more times I read it, the more I memorize and commit verses to heart. I also gain a deeper appreciation for what is written and what Jesus has done for me. The closer I grow to God in my relationship with Him, the more He reveals to me in His Word.
The Bible didn’t change, but my level of attention and understanding did.
“Let us stop going over the same old ground again and again, always teaching those first lessons about Christ. Let us go on instead to other things and become mature in our understanding, as strong Christians ought to be. Surely we don’t need to speak further about the foolishness of trying to be saved by being good, or about the necessity of faith in God; you don’t need further instruction about baptism and spiritual gifts and the resurrection of the dead and eternal judgment. The Lord willing, we will go on now to other things.” (Hebrews 6:1-3 TLB)
Praying that you discover something deeper this Christmas. Perhaps something that was once hidden or unnoticed before . . . but with increased attention and maturity, may God reveal something new to you this season.