"I put it under my pillow, then the tooth fairy comes and magically turns it into a dollar!"
Even before she lost her first tooth two years ago, Jane knew the truth about the tooth fairy. We made the decision to tell her about Santa from the beginning in an attempt to keep Christmas more focused on Christ, and she easily extrapolated the "it's fun to pretend but it's really Mom and Dad" idea to the Easter bunny and the tooth fairy.
Yet as she showed Annie the tooth she lost yesterday, she explained things only how she wanted them to be and not how she knows they really are.
This is great. Jane is 7 and Annie is 3. I love to see their creativity, and I'm glad they still get to enjoy the magic of childhood even though they know they're just pretending.
But it made me think. What myths do we hold on to, share, and disguise until we believe them? There are "tooth fairies" of many shapes and sizes.
Happiness comes from wealth, popularity, and attaining the perfect body.
All truth is relative.
I'm not a good mom unless ... [fill in your unrealistic expectation].
My choices only affect me.
Chastity is outdated.
These types of myths are elaborately costumed in expert claims, cultural trends, and specialized apps. With their skillfully constructed wings, capes, and wands they almost seem real and it can feel impossible to determine where the truth actually lies.
But there is a way.
"For the Spirit speaketh the truth and lieth not. Wherefore, it speaketh of things as they really are, and of things as they really will be."
the Truth," He will teach us as the children we are and help us understand what is eternally real. These myths may feel as real to us as the tooth fairy to a child, but His spirit will cut through the lies and help us see past the costumes. We will realize that when we cling to things that are pretend, we will only find pretend happiness.
But it's hard to be different. It's embarrassing to show up in plain clothes when everyone else is in costumes.
I remember being the only one of my friends who no longer believed in Santa. I felt lonely and a little bit crazy. They were so convinced. They had so much "evidence." Maybe I was wrong.
It can feel that way when we don't believe the generally accepted myths. Alone. A little crazy. Confused.
But ultimately my friends all learned what I knew. And one day all truth will come to light. We can stand confidently in the truth as we stand with the Truth.