Here’s the song reference.
One of the highlights of the period between Thanksgiving and Christmas, which includes the season of Advent, from the tribe’s perspective, is the collection of Christmas DVDs that magically appears in Fran the Van after the turkey has been eaten. At our house, we are big fans of the old animated specials dating from the 1970s, and because we are a family who celebrates the birth of Christ, we tend to focus on those films and specials that tell stories relating to the Nativity. We enjoy the tales of Frosty, and Rudolph, and Santa, too, but during Advent, we try to keep the tiny people’s focus on love and humility.
It’s a great blessing to me that one of my favorite Christmas stories is also beloved by the tribe, particularly Bugaboo and Beanie. If you are unfamiliar with Nestor, the Long-Eared Christmas Donkey, I highly recommend grabbing a cup of coffee and a sandwich, clicking the link, and relaxing with a classic bit of animation for the next 24 minutes or so. To my delight, I was able to acquire a copy of it on DVD about a month ago, and I’d been eagerly anticipating surprising the kids with it. When we first played it in the van during our travels last week, the girls made me promise that I would only put it in on trips where they could watch the entire program from beginning to end. I’ve learned a number of circuitous routes to nearby destinations since then.
As it happened, Bugaboo sadly trudged into the kitchen yesterday morning, bearing in her wee hands a Polly Pocket doll with a missing leg. She is, as a general rule, pretty generous about sharing her toys with her sister and brothers, but the boys don’t always play nicely with them, with the occasional severed toy limb being one of the consequences.
“Mommy, Polly lost her leg again. I don’t think the glue worked. I guess I have to throw her away.”
“I’m sorry, sweetheart. You don’t have to throw her away, though.”
“But she’s broken. Even you and Daddy couldn’t fix her.”
“Come sit with me.” She climbed up into my lap. “You actually have quite a gift there.”
“Really? Why is a broken toy a gift?”
“Bugaboo, remember how we talked about how God makes every person just a little bit different? How people come in different colors, sizes, and shapes?”
“Well, now one of your dolls has a little different shape than the others. Even though she only has one leg, she’s still beautiful. Remember the lady soldier we met at the fair who only had one leg?”
“Yeah, I remember her! She was really nice.”
“And now you have a Polly Pocket who reminds you of her.”
She thought about that for a minute before breaking into a wide smile. “I have a very brave Polly! She can be the Polly who works with the Rescue Bots to save the other people when they’re in trouble!” With that, she sprinted back to her room.
Today’s prayer: Lord, thank You for creating each one of Your blessings to be just a little different from each other one. Please help me teach Your little blessings to keep their hearts and minds open to Your face in every person they meet, to see that no matter what their physical appearance may be, all of them are created in Your image and likeness, to receive those differences with love instead of scornful mockery. Grant us the wisdom to see that every human being has merit and a soul that yearns to reflect You, and has a heart to love and to hurt as Yours does. Please guard our hearts closely against falling into the trap of judging people only on worldly standards of physical attraction and earning potential, and keep ever in our thoughts the sure knowledge that every life created by You is precious, and should never be discarded because of some perceived defect or imperfection. Help us lead souls to You by our example of agape love towards all Your children.