The Oldest Story We Can All Relate To

Inspiring stories about parenting, its challenges, and how people are able to deal with it are all over but there is one particular story that has become my favorite.

There once lived a couple who never had a child. They were already old and the idea of having one seems more impossible as years go by. The day, however, came when someone paid a visit and who then told the husband that they will soon have a son.

His wife who overheard the conversation couldn’t believe her ears. The news to her was unreal. She believed that she cannot bear a child anymore but her husband who is a man of big faith knew otherwise.

And a miracle did happen. The once childless couple soon became a parent of a son. He was a gift and they love him so much.

Years passed and something would put them to the test. The man was told that their most cherished son needs to be offered and he received instructions how it would be done.

The fateful day arrived. Overcoming sadness as well as reluctance the man proceeded as planned. Taking his son with him he climbed the mountain where everything would take place. All set, the altar ready and his son tied up, the man raised his knife to execute the ultimate sacrifice.

Just as he was about to take his own son’s life, a voice from heaven soon thundered as an Angel ordered, “You have proven yourself. Let go of your son and from the bushes you will find a lamb. Use it instead as your offering to God.” This is the story of the couple Abraham and Sarah and their son, their only son, Isaac.

I never knew that a story from the biblical period, one that I have read to our son several times before, will soon be the same as our condition sans the altar and the need to slay a son–even a poor lamb. The similarity is in how an unexpected situation would test our faith.

It was how it felt like when my wife and I first learned about Marcus having a progressive crippling condition. We questioned God, we asked so many questions. We asked why us. We asked why of all children, why Marcus. We hoped that we would soon find the answers.

For now we cannot do anything but accept the fact that this predicament we are in is a test–a rather difficult one–that we need to pass. It is our own cross that we need to carry and a monster that we should face boldly. We must remain steadfast with the heartbreaking fact that we will eventually lose our only son because of Duchenne Muscle Dystrophy. I know that this is also the same feeling that others have whose lives of their loved ones are threatened by conditions like cancer and Alzheimer’s disease.

Such unfortunate circumstance made the recently concluded Father’s Day more meaningful to me. While until now I continue to strive to be that ideal father, I know that I have found my purpose in life: to be a good father that Marcus needs to have whether or not that angel from heaven comes down and tells us, “You’ve passed, you will have your beloved son back.”

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Mood: 6/10 Honks! (He told his mother that he finds it hard to wake up from bed.)

The Guardians and the Bible

The Guardians. (Image from the web.)

The last page of the calendar is already out. It is already December but lately a lot of news on TV have been overwhelmingly sad. Crime rate is going up and this is not the Christmas season that most of us once knew as kids and definitely not the one that we would like our own kids to remember. It is therefore a relief that behind all the negativity around us are things that tell the young minds that Christmas is still around the corner.  Among these is the movie Rise of the Guardians.

Thanks to the creative geniuses at Dreamworks Animation as they have once again concocted and produced a movie that not only entertains but at the same time conveys a subject matter that kids do not easily find nowadays. Rise of the Guardians is an animated film about Jack Frost and other popular mythical characters but appearing in their not usual form:  there is the authoritative Santa Claus (known as North), the cranky Easter Bunny, the sexy tooth fairy, and the nonverbal Sandman.  And of course, there is the bad guy named Pitch, aka the boogeyman.

Originally, I got attracted to this movie just because it has a Santa Claus  but its appeal grew twofold. As the movie goes along I begin to notice that behind the spectacular animation and funny scenes (I became a fan of the golden Sandman) is a story which I think has a lot of biblical references thus making those lessons from the holy book easier to digest by the younger ones.

To cite an example, among the lines in the film “…for as long as they believe in us, we will guard them with our lives” actually has its own mature equivalent from Genesis 18:26: “…if you can find a man, if there is any that executes justice, that seeks the truth; and I will pardon it.

And the one told by Jack Frost said to Jamie (not verbatim): “you don’t stop believing in the sun just because it is hidden behind the dark clouds” made me recall the one from my other blog regarding an argument about faith between a  student and his atheist professor.

While it is highly likely that its young moviegoers, like Marcus who knows more Ninjago characters than Saints, won’t fully understand yet the deeper meaning of the messages that Rise of the Guardians relay, it is nice to know that there is another movie this yuletide season that conditions the minds of our kids, through good entertainment, what the values that they are supposed to know and do at least during Christmas time.

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There are things I realized while watching Rise of the Guardians:

  1. I never knew Sandman as someone associated with kids’ dreams. I blame Metallica and Spider-Man.
  2. Despite recently celebrating my birthday, making me closer to that age wherein they say is when life begins, I am among those who get excited at the sight of that fat man in red suit.

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Recommended read: Should you tell your kid the truth about Santa Claus?

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Mood: 2/10 Honks! (Going to a Christmas party for Marcus.)