Believe as a child or as an adult?

As Christmas nears, and parents take kids to see Santa, I remember standing on the stairway landing at my paternal Grandmother's home in Bismarck with my cousins.  We peered out the tall window at a twinkling sky.  We pre-schoolers were sure we would see Santa in his sled pulled by reindeer soaring across stars that Christmas Eve night.  Finally, we reported to our parents that we had seen him!  No adult squelched our belief.  

The next morning we all had gifts under the trees in our own houses.  Proof that we had been "good little girls" and that, yes, there IS a Santa.

I've heard of big kids breaking Little Kids' hearts by telling them there is no Santa.  I had no siblings to jolt me with the information that Santa did not deliver gifts, but parents did.  As my brain developed minimal critcal thinking skills, I wondered how a fat man could get down our chimney.  Then at about age seven, I was snooping and found a doll,  She later appeared under the tree with a tag from Santa.  Awakening!

Awakening is good.

The faith or belief of children is a beautiful and charming thing.  But adults need to wake up.

I ponder the variety of "beliefs" adults have, beliefs they will live and die and kill for, I am mystified.  

Some people deny science, but are passionate--or fanatic--about superstitions.  I know a person who consults "psychics," "medical intuitives," or a pyschiatrist about nearly every decision.  She recenlty did not like what her physician told her, so she called a "medical intuitive" and paid for the advice offered over the phone---No exam necessary!  Folks with "special" insights are not cheap, so have a credit card ready!

Some people consult tea leaves, Tarot Cards, Horoscopes, animal entrails.  But they deny science?  Recently Marco Rubio was asked how old the Earth is? (Stupid question to ask a pol.)  He repled that a theologian should be consulted about that!  What about a geologist or paleontologist?  When asked about fossils in the various strata, I heard one "believer" say "The Devil planted them to deceive us."  Oh my!

On recent news, a nurse in Britain commited suicide.  It seems she was deceived by a call from Australian broadcasters who pretended to be Queen Elizabeth, so she connected them to Kate's room. This morning's paper carries a story of a person who is playing "victim" locally and asking good people for money so he can get back to his country where a relative is ill.  Many have been scammed by him.  Many seniors have been preyed upon by sending money to "help" a grandhchild when a stranger calls.  The emails from folks who barely speak English are amusing as they promise you half of their fortune if you will give them your bank account number.  But it is not funny if they clean you out.  Why would a person believe a sob story from a stranger?

Charities from far and wide tell us of needs.  The needs do exist, but how do you know where your money goes when you send it away?  Who and what can we believe?  In recent years, our belief in clergy, in teachers, in financial advisors, in coaches, in law enforcement and courts,  in institutuions, in "news media" has been shattered.  

I hate to break it to you, but there is no Santa in the adult world.  There is no magic amulet or good luck charm to get you through.  There is no one who can tell you your future.  Get past your childish belief that you can be "healed" or "get rich quick," or be "saved" or rescue someone else.  We all have to make tough desicions and not believe everything we hear on the media.  

Don't wait for Santa or believe in magic.  Save that for children.  BE Santa in your hometown.  Donate to local causes.  You don't have to have a lot of money to give a gift.  Shovel the sidewalk for a neighbor.  Visit a shut in.  Take some cookies---and a treat for their dog or cat.  Give a ride to someone who doesn't drive.  

Santa is not dead if he lives in you!  And it really is better to give than receive.