Sometimes, the best theology lessons come from old kid’s TV specials. I saw Rudolph’s Shiny New Year again tonight and was reminded of a few things, thanks to Happy the Baby New Year.

Happy was just like every other baby new year except for one thing. He had big ears. Like Dumbo-sized big ears. And he was ashamed of them.

Whenever he took off his hat, he got laughed at. Even in the Archipelago of Last Years, where you would think people would be more tolerant, considering that they’re stuck in a time warp.

But as in all children’s programming, there’s a good moral lesson. Happy learns that not everybody is making fun of him. Some people are so filled with joy that they can’t help but laugh when they see him. And everything works out in the end, thanks to Rudolph and the gang, not forgetting Santa’s timely arrival.

The happiest people are the most content people. And the most content people are the ones who have learned to accept themselves as they are, not wishing they looked different or that they were somebody else. They have found what makes them tick and what makes them come alive and they are pursuing that.

The key is knowing who you are in Christ. It’s knowing how he sees you, not as a dirty rotten sinner but as a beloved child who was worth dying for. The one he calls precious and beloved.

May the best gift you get this year be the ability to love yourself as you are and the ability to love others the same. May you know how much you are loved by Abba Father himself. May you live out of that love every day.

I recommend watching an old children’s Christmas TV special or two. Especially the old ones. Those are the best.


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