Thoughts on Kingdom, Church, and Grace from an American living in Hong Kong

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Keeping Heaven, and Toy Story Land, in our Hearts!

Ethan just stood...and stared!
One of the best things about living in Hong Kong is that I have a Disneyland about 30 minutes from where we live.  Yes, God, in his infinite wisdom and knowing I would be returning to live in the city, had Hong Kong Disneyland built just for me...

...Ok, so it wasn't built just for me, but you have to admit, it's pretty cool to live 30 minutes from a Disneyland.

Anyhow, we visited the park late one afternoon last week and I got a little insight from my not quite 2 year old son, Ethan George, on what having a "focus on heaven" can do for one's ...mmmm... enthusiasm.

We were in Grizzly Gulch, one of the 3 new "mini-lands" being constructed at the park alongside Toy Story Land and the soon to be completed Mystic Point.  It was September hot in Hong Kong and the cool water geysers in Grizzly Gulch were helping to keep us all chilled.  (Grizzly Gulch is a recreation of 1880's America West)

The start of the path
After riding the new roller coaster and running through the water area we decided it was time to take little Ethan to his favorite place in the park, Toy Story Land.  Toy Story Land lay just beyond the "soon to open" Mystic Point but the park had wisely put up a temporary wall creating a path through the construction area thus avoiding a long walk backtracking around the Jungle Cruise ride.

Tammy went to use the bathroom and said she'd meet us in Toy Story Land which left Ethan George and I to make the walk together.  The walls along the path were quite tall as to mostly shield the building work as well as to not break the "fantasy" of Disneyland by watching construction workers build the latest attraction.

Is this heaven?
But from Ethan's vantage point it just looked like a cool tunnel and like a bullet raced onto the "path".  But as he ran for a bit he realized nothing changed; just the same old boring high walled road.  As he turned a bend only to discover more road his pace got slower and slower, till finally he turned around and started walking back toward Grizzly Gulch.  I grabbed the little buck-a-roo and spun him back in the right direction and then holding his hand we walked together.

But it was late afternoon, the sun was setting in our eyes, and it was hot.  On top of that, because of his height, Ethan couldn't see the tall buildings and Amazonian theme of Mystic Point that was rising just beyond the walls.  Nope, all the little guy could see was lots of never ending walls and hot sun in his eyes.  After a few paces, he turned around and was literally trying to drag me back to Grizzly Gulch.  If he could speak it would go something like this, " Papa, forget the Promised Land, I wanna go back to Egypt."

I again spun him around, much to his displeasure, and headed us off in the right direction.  I knew once he "saw" Toy Story Land his heart would change.  We trudged on...Ethan hated it...but we trudged on.

Then, after turning a bend, Ethan got his first glimpse of his destination.  I watched him try to make it out as the sun was in his eyes. "Was that Rex the dinosaur?  Is that the Toy Story music I hear?  Is it, no it can't be...Buzz & Woody?"  The contorted look of pain suddenly turned to joy.  A big wide smile from ear to ear broke out across his face.  Suddenly he was running...and in the right direction!

The long path still to be walked was ignored.  The heat, the sun, the humidity...the boredom was but a distant thought in light of the glory that was Toy Story Land!  The only thing that mattered was arriving at his goal!

In my last post I reviewed a book Things Unseen about the importance of keeping a heavenly mindedness in heart as we encounter the world around us.  When we fail to keep our eyes on Heaven we will be continually discouraged by the momentary things that surround us.  We may even be tempted to turn around and head back to Grizzly Gulch.

Last week I had a lesson from my 2 year old on the advantages of keeping Toy Story Land in our heart

No comments: