Monday, August 24, 2009

Being called Jesus

I can't think of a greater compliment than the one I received tonight. From a five year old boy called "Fuzzy." His real name is Lee, same as my middle name.
We were having a family gathering. And our family is big, so big that many of the relatives are strangers for the most part. At special occasions like funerals or weddings we offer the obligatory, "so how have you been?" and try to remember their name. And once you're in the family you can't get out. When the family gets together it's everyone that ever was a part of the family. The ex-husbands, ex-wives, in-laws, unofficially adopted no blood relation relatives. Y'all come. Once you're in, you're in there ain't no gettin' out. It's easier to get out of the mafia than this family.

But tonight was different. It was a small group. We were having a going away party for Rosie (my wife's sister.) She flies back to Georgia in the morning. We did the usual stuff, talk, laugh, eat and watch kids play. And I met Fuzzy. This was new. Fuzzy is my sister in laws grandson. So, I think that would make me his great uncle .Or more appropriate he is a great nephew. (I think- some kind-of- kin anyway)

Somehow, five year old Fuzzy, took center stage. He became a fire breathing dragon. He explained that by spinning in a circle he would change from, "this thing" as he patted himself on the head, to "this, a fire breathing dragon with wings." Flapping his wings and pretending to breath fire his cousin joined in and we watched the dragons put on a show. Fuzzy said he could fly up to Jesus in the clouds and Jesus would say, "Oh what a lovely dragon."

When asked to sing he did. Not quiet and shy. But with all his might. The first song, I did not know, I couldn't understand and I wasn't too impressed. It was a few lines from a song by AC DC and it didn't sound like something a five year old should be singing but, that's just me. I smiled, it was cute and all, I mean he's five years old no matter what they do they'll be cute. Next his grandma picked a song. This one I knew, he didn’t. “How about Jesus loves me?” We helped him with the words and by the last line he was getting the hang of it, belting out at the top of his lungs, "JESUS LOVES ME THIS I KNOW FOR THE BIBLE TELLS ME SO." When the song ended he looked at Grandma and said, "But I don't even have a Bible." Grandma told him he did, but he wasn't listening. He started to shout, as he ran out the front door, "I BELIEVE IN GOD, I BELIEVE IN GOD" Out the door he ran around cousins playing, past adults sitting in lawn chairs. "I BELIEVE IN GOD" he sang. He stopped only because he wasn’t watching where he was going and ran right smack into an Evergreen tree. (He wasn’t hurt.)

I’m not exactly sure why, but kids and I get along pretty good. So as usual when the adults are talking politics and my wife is helping clean up, I’m goofin’ off with the kids. For no apparent reason Fuzzy blurted out, “Hi Jesus, you’re Jesus.” Jesus? Huh? Me? That felt, well, good in a way, but at the same time humbling, strange (and if I don’t tell him quick I’m not Jesus I might get struck by lightning.) But he’s only a kid, what does he know right? I told him, “I’m not Jesus. He lives with me and I try to be like Him.But, I'm not Him.” He smiled, “No, you’re Jesus.”

After getting to know Fuzzy a little better, he started calling me Doug. Things were back to normal. And it was time to go. We said our goodbyes.

As we walked toward our truck a voice rang out, “I gotta say goodbye to Jesus.” I turned and saw the front door burst open, a five year old, three foot tall dragon flew out the door and bounced down the steps as fast as his little legs could carry him. He jumped and I caught as he said again, “I gotta say goodbye to Jesus.” He hugged me and said, “ Bye Jesus, I love you.” I hugged him and with quivering lips said, “I love you too.”

He ran back to the house, bouncing up the steps repeating, “I had to say goodbye to Jesus,” and then yelling over his shoulder one more time, “bye Jesus, I love you.”

I'm not sure if I should post this for fear one may say I'm being prideful about being called Jesus. I pray I am not.

Fuzzy, like Jesus, lives without reserve, unafraid to run with passion, yelling, “I believe in God” straight to the cross, the Ever Green Tree.

The WWJD bracelet on my wrist has been there for years. I wonder if others see Jesus in me.

Is it clear or is it just Fuzzy.


Anne L.B. said...

Perhaps you were the image of love Jesus sent Fuzzy. After he sang "Jesus Loves Me," it seems to me you somehow personified that to him, Doug.

And I agree, that's a great compliment, to you AND to Jesus.

Sherri said...

Wow, what a real life reminder that sometimes we are 'Jesus' to those around us...well, I guess we are supposed to be Jesus to those around us ALL the time.

Thanks for saying that truth in a way that hits home.

FaithBarista Bonnie said...

Oh, I don't think you're being prideful at all. That is a great compliment when someone mistakes you for your Daddy!

I believe it - it must've been your kind and loving spirit, infused with Jesus. I'm sure.

I remember as a kid a few people I've met that were just so loving and full of happiness, I couldn't help but think Jesus was like them.

Looks like you are one of those people!

Anonymous said...

Doug, you are such a kind and loving person. You are what all these kids need in their life. What we as parents cant teach them you can! You are an angel sent to us! Thank you for all you have done for our whole entire family!!
Love you~ Tammy