Not too long ago I was walking with Ryken, a three-year-old with incredible insights and a fascination with zombies. We passed a home with deflated blow-ups. It was easy to see what they were supposed to be, but his imagination went another direction.
“They’re dead now, Nana, but they won’t stay dead. They’ll come back to life when it’s dark, like zombies. They can’t live when the sun is out.”
Not being an expert on zombies, I wasn’t exactly sure what he was seeing. If it was something fearsome that would come to life to walk the streets with their Michelin Man shapes or if he was playing out a scene he’d seen on a video game.
“It’s an inflatable, buddy. To celebrate the holidays.”
He shook his head. “Nope. They’re zombies.”
I’ve been surprised at the increased number of inflatables I’ve seen this holiday season. They’ve diversified into very un-holiday figures.
I get Santa and Frosty. They’re iconic. Rudolph is always fun because his nose can twinkle. Some have added Santa hats or Christmas trees to make them holiday appropriate. Lightening McQueen with a tree on his bumper. Mickey Mouse with a Santa suit. Despicable Me minions with holiday hats. The Peanuts gang in a cute nativity scene.
There are others that just don’t make sense. A Fire and Ice Dragon–huge and very odd amidst a lawn full of holiday figures. The Cinderella castle from Disney with no wreath or tree to be seen.
Filling a lawn with inflatables. A big and bold statement.
I’ve nothing against inflatables. Some are whimsical. Others are just weird.
I do miss the creative way folks used to decorate with lights. Many still do. But more and more are relying on the blow-ups and those gizmos that shine moving lights on a house. Not a bad thing. But the draw is do it big and fast.
We’ve driven through neighborhoods where entire blocks are decked out with lights that took time. There was a methodology in placement. Those are the places I want to pull over and just look. Smile. Appreciate the effort.
This could easily be me.I’ll rush Christmas. Do the easy, the big and bold, without taking the time to reflect on what this season is all about. Rush through preparations. Getting the biggest bang for my time bucks. I don’t want to spend time thinking about what folks want or need. I just want it done.
That’s when I lose. When I miss the wonder and awe of what this season is really about. A plan that had been in place for all of time finally coming to fruition. A God who cared so deeply about those He’d created that He didn’t want to leave them stranded and homeless.
We all walked away from Him. He did what He needed to do to make it possible for us to come home to Him.
This wasn’t a quick answer. And it takes thought to consider all the consequences for us.
Home. Heaven. Yes, a bold statement.
Is it worth what it will take for us to get there?
I’d bet my life on it.
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