A Theological Dilemma

When my son, Aaron, was seven years old, he was confronted with his first real theological dilemma. He had lost another tooth and was frantically searching the linen closet for the tooth fairy pillow. Once found, he promptly deposited the tooth in the little pocket and placed it under his pillow. In the morning the tooth would be gone and, presto, in its place would be a dollar. (Yes, I know my older tooth fairy friends; it used to be a nickel. Well, inflation has also hit the tooth fairy business!) Now, the dilemma.

That evening, Aaron sat pondering at the kitchen table. I hadn’t seen him in such a pensive mood before. “Why, he is pondering something of extreme importance,” I thought. “A penny for your thoughts,” I said. “A penny,” he replied, “gee, Dad, what can you buy with a penny?” He got up from the chair and ran out to play. (Fellow tooth fairies, inflation has also hit the expression.)

There on the table I discovered the reason for Aaron’s brooding. It would seem that his pen pal at school had written him a letter which was causing him to rethink this business of believing in the tooth fairy. This was the letter he received.

“Dear Aaron,
Do you believe in the tooth fairy? I do not!
Love, Kari”

CONSIDER, throughout our lives we are confronted with such dilemmas. With Aaron, his belief was profitable and any real soul searching might take away the gain. His belief was a childish one and would, if not now, someday soon be challenged by his maturing mind. However, sometimes as adults we hold onto childish beliefs reluctant to let go of them because they give us a sense of security or power. Unfortunately, the security is so often false and the power is actually powerless.

Paul says it best in his letter to the childish Corinthians… “When I was a child, I spoke like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child; when I became a man, I gave up my childish ways. For now we see in a mirror dimly, but then face to face. Now I know in parts; then I shall understand fully, even as I have been fully understood. So faith, hope, love abide, these three; but the greatest of these is love.” (1 Corinthians 13:11-13)

Rev. Wendell Mettey
Revised 2/24/2014

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