The Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade is an iconic fixture in the American observance of Thanksgiving. Among the lineup of massive balloons in this year’s 91st installment was “Harold the Baseball Player.” The return of Harold to the lineup of cartoon characters and superheroes was a tribute to the 1947 Holiday classic, Miracle on 34th Street, in which the float is featured prominently.
Perhaps you have seen the movie and remember the story’s central character, Susan, who has become hardened eight year-old skeptic regarding the existence of Santa Claus. That is until she meets an eccentric Macy’s store Santa named Kris Kringle. After a series of run-ins with the store psychiatrist, Kris finds himself on trial, fighting commitment to a sanitorium for claiming to be the one-and-only-Santa. In a melodramatic courtroom climax, Kris’ lawyer with the assistance of the U. S. Post Office proves that Kris is THE Santa Claus. But it is not quite enough for Susan. When she fails to receive an extraordinary gift she requested, she is plunged again into disbelief. As she struggles to believe, the tells herself, “believe, just believe.” You may have noticed the word “Believe” on the front of Macy’s New York store as this year’s parade rolled by.
Disillusionment comes easily when things don’t turn out as we expect and those we trust don’t seem to deliver. If this is true with relatively minor things like the existence of mere men of legend, consider how devastating it can be when it comes to matters of eternal life and death. Have you ever been disappointed with God, either His action or His timing? Have you ever felt that His promises have failed or that we have ruined our chances of knowing His love and mercy? Have you ever feared that God doesn’t care about “people like me?” Disappointment with God is a common struggle. This is why the Bible tells us that “faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen.” (Hebrews 11:1)
As with a parade, we cannot see the big picture, only what is passing in front of us. To look at God through the lens of our circumstances can give a distorted view of Him. In the Bible, the Gospels give us that “drone’s eye view” of the parade and reveal to us the unfolding of God’s promises through the incarnation of a Redeemer.
Join us this Lord’s Day, November 26, as we celebrate the season by considering from Matthew’s gospel the unbelievable story of the eternal God who became flesh and dwelled among us, to keep all God’s promises and to give us new life. This week we consider Matthew 1:1-17, the genealogy of Jesus, and what it says about God’s love and faithfulness.
We meet from 5:00 – 6:30 pm in The Commons at St. Andrews Anglican Church at 8300 Kanis Rd in Little Rock. Click here for directions. Come with a friend you and join us for fellowship and conversation. We look forward to seeing you there.