I know that, at this point in early February, we’re well passed Christmas and the Christmas season. However, I wanted to share with you some observations and conversations I had during the Christmas season.
My eldest has finally concluded, absolutely and positively without any doubt, that there is no such thing as Santa Claus. “After all, Dad, how in the world can he be going down every single chimney in every single house in the entire country…come on…Dad!”
So, I said, “you know, Jordan, you have to be careful about what you believe and don’t believe in. If you don’t believe in Santa Claus, he won’t come!”
He froze in his tracks on that one.
Visions of Legos he had requested, the advanced games for Xbox and Game Cube…all of them started racing through his mind as he was looking at me, somberly. I saw the quandary he was in. If he challenged me again, all those Christmas gifts would go out the window. But if he didn’t challenge me, he was convinced he was being sold a bill of goods!
“But Dad, there’s just no way. How in the world could this fellow be able to hit the entire world in one night with all of those presents! It’s just not possible! It has to be you and Mommy giving us all those gifts!”
“I understand what you’re saying, Jordan. But the bottom line is that if you don’t believe in Santa Claus, Santa Claus won’t come! It’s just that simple!”
I found it necessary at that point to turn the conversation into somewhat of a learning lesson. I continued.
“You know Jordan, in all honesty, if you really don’t believe in Santa Claus, why would Santa Claus come? If you don’t believe in love, how are you ever going to recognize it when it’s right in front of you. And if you don’t believe that people are fundamentally good in their hearts, how are you going to recognize a good person when you see one?”
Jordan sauntered off, not one bit convinced about Santa Claus, of course, but realizing that there was something else happening in the conversation that he had to think about. I know what’s going to happen. Three months from now, Jordan will come back to me and reiterate the conversation word for word.
But as I was walking through that conversation with Jordan, I was really thinking about all of us in life.
How can we ultimately see what we don’t believe in? If we don’t believe in love, or in truth, or in goodness, we won’t be able to recognize it when it’s there. Because, at the end of the day, what we see with our eyes is the reality we experience with our lives or, said just slightly differently, what we see through our eyes is the destiny we live out.
I’m sure each and every one of you has had experiences of individuals who, no matter how they are confronted by bad things happening, always maintain optimism. I’m sure you’ve also been exposed to individuals who, no matter how many good people are around them, always see life as trying to take advantage of them, or not giving them enough. I had dealings with several individuals in business, with whom I no longer associate, who saw any business dealing as an opportunity for other people to steal what they owned. So they were going to make sure that they would always protect their backs, not matter what! It made having an objective or rational conversation just a bit difficult.
I’m sure you’ve heard the old expression, “wherever you go…there you are.”
What appears so absolutely self-evident to me is that the mindset and belief system we bring to perceiving the reality around us defines that reality. Believe in goodness and you identify it everywhere around you. Believe in love and you see the loving part of life around you. And believe in opportunities…and opportunities surround you on a day-to-day basis.
Is life truly that simple: Believe it and it shall be?
It’s probably not quite that simple – there are no doubt free radicals out there that our own belief systems can’t control – however, as to the part of life within our control (and that’s an awfully big chunk of it you know) it literally could be. Think about it.