The Great Secret

An Excerpt from Reaching for Insights: Stories of Love, Faith, and the Kitchen Sink, by Mitch Rosenzweig

I am not sure when I first learned the truth. It could have been one of my oh-so-helpful brothers who told me, or I could have learned about it in some dark alley. Of course, I wanted to believe in Santa. I think like many, I wanted to hedge my bets. Better to believe and get presents than doubt and get coal. Of course, I knew that all the presents didn't come from Santa. We got them from Mom and other family members.

When I was raising my children, we were pretty sneaky. We had four types of wrapping paper. Santa had his own for each of the kids, and mom and dad had different paper. When my daughter was old enough, she too wanted to know if Santa was real. I think she asked me the day after Christmas, just to be safe.

Inevitably we go through challenges and changes in our beliefs as we grow up. When we were young, we believed in magic, fantasy, and things unknown. I remember my older brother magically making quarters appear for my son after he had stealthily hidden them around the house. My son was amazed. As children, we are very willing to believe in the unknown. It's not that we are gullible; it's just there is so much we have yet to learn about life and the world that the mystery of faith seems natural. Of course there is a God-that's easy to believe.