Lessons I’ve Learned from Buddy the Elf …
It’s Christmas Eve day and my kids and I are watching “Elf” starring Will Ferrell. This is a holiday favorite of ours and I’m a bit flabbergasted that our schedules haven’t allowed us to watch it before now.
We have a lot of fun traditions at the Tiede house when it comes to Advent, and that includes this movie. Let me explain …
- This is a movie about faith. Seriously. No, Jesus isn’t mentioned. In fact, you can’t find anything even a little bit spiritual in the movie. No nativity set, no mention of the Baby Jesus, no prayer … nevertheless, you can’t miss the fact that Buddy’s primary purpose is to get people to believe in what they can’t see … believing in the unseen … that’s FAITH.
Faith is the confidence that what we hope for will actually happen; it gives us assurance about things we cannot see. Hebrews 11:1
- Sweet Buddy reminds us that a pure heart and genuine goodness brings out the best in even the hardest heart. “I just like to smile. Smiling’s my favorite.”
A cheerful heart is good medicine, but a broken spirit saps a person’s strength. Proverbs 17:22
- Sometimes you are compelled to call out wrong and speak truth even if it’s not popular. “You sit on a throne of lies! You stink. You smell like beef and cheese. You don’t smell like Santa! … He’s a fake! He’s a fake! He’s not Santa!”
Instead, we will speak the truth in love, growing in every way more and more like Christ, who is the head of his body, the church.Ephesians 4:15
- I suspect that Buddy might just be showing us what childlike faith is supposed to look like. “First we’ll make snow angels for a two hours, then we’ll go ice skating, then we’ll eat a whole roll of Tollhouse cookie dough as fast as we can, and then we’ll snuggle.”
Jesus called a little child to him and put the child among them. Then he said, “I tell you the truth, unless you turn from your sins and become like little children, you will never get into the Kingdom of Heaven. So anyone who becomes as humble as this little child is the greatest in the Kingdom of Heaven.Matthew 18:2-4
- Family is family … whether it’s your biological family or your adopted family. Buddy was loved by Papa Elf (Bob Newhart) and Santa, but in time he was also loved by his biological father, his step mom, and brother. “I don’t want you to leave. You’re my son, and I love you.”
See how very much our Father loves us, for he calls us his children, and that is what we are! But the people who belong to this world don’t recognize that we are God’s children because they don’t know him. 1 John 3:1
That’s probably the biggest lesson of all. When we seek our Father, He receives us with open arms. Always … No antics on our part other than inclining our hearts toward Him.
Just for fun … my kids made Buddy’s favorite meal for lunch today. I think after all that sugar, I’ll sit by myself at Church tonight. They can’t be trusted with candles! Pray for us!