To start this story off right, let me introduce you to our main character. In a previous article I mentioned a very wise person I had spoken to about Trust Life; how he had shared his thoughts about “If God has a soul, it would be life,” and his expansion on that. I also mentioned that this person happened to be eight years old and his parents had asked me to keep his name private. But we have to call him something, so I decided to talk to him about it.
I had the opportunity to speak to him last week. I told him that I would be writing about some of our conversations every now and then on my blog. I also explained how I wouldn’t be calling him by his real name, but instead by a different name. He asked what name I was thinking of using. I told him Sam, to which he twisted his face into a look of immediate rejection. “Okay then, what would you like to be called?” I asked. “Red Fox,” he said, with no hesitation. “If it’s going to be like a code name, it needs to sound like a code name. Yep. Red Fox works.” To which I laughed out loud. I said he is wise, and yes he is, but let’s not forget, he is only eight years old. Nice reminder there, Red Fox. Thanks for that.
And so our story begins. It was during a very hot day last summer, I went outdoors to bring drinks to my boys, who were playing outside with some neighborhood kids. I noticed Red Fox, a little off to the side, not completely engaged with the other children… contemplating something no doubt. I caught his eye to say hello and he made a bee-line directly toward me and said, “I need to ask you a question.”
“Alright,” I responded. “Shoot.”
“Who is Mel Gibson?”
A bit surprised by the random nature of the question, I responded with a straight forward, “He’s an actor.”
“What has he been in? I mean, where would I have seen him?”
“Well, I don’t know,” I began. “Off the top of my head, I can’t think of any voices he’s done for any kid’s movies — maybe you haven’t seen him in anything. Anyway, he’s a famous actor. Why do you ask?”
Disregarding my question, he plowed forward with another question of his own. “Why’s he all over the news right now?”
Hmmm…. not knowing how appropriate it would be to disclose information about the whole ugliness that was going on, I simply answered, “He has recently made some very poor choices.”
“Who has?” came an unfamiliar voice.
Whew, it was his father’s voice. Good. He could explain, which he proceeded to do, in very simple terms, not going into too much detail, but enough detail for this eight year old to get the gist of it.
Moments after the brief explanation, the father walked off and I was left looking at a little boy whose inner wheels were obviously working hard to comprehend. I remember feeling badly that I couldn’t go into more detail; he so clearly wanted to understand.
As the following conversation unfolded, it became apparent to me that he had not only gotten the gist of it, he had also understood so much more.
With eyebrows furrowed, he asked, “Where does this Mel Gibson live?”
“Well, Hollywood, I guess. Maybe New York. I’m not sure. Why?”
Again, he disregarded my ‘why’, and barreled ahead with, “Are people actually from Hollywood? I mean, these actors like Mel Gibson. Is he from there or is he from somewhere else?”
“No, I don’t think most actors are actually from Hollywood,” I replied. “I believe Mel Gibson is from Australia.”
And at that moment, I saw the light bulb go off. He had pieced it together in his mind, at which point, he very matter-of-factly stated, “Oh. I see. He has forgotten where he came from.”
As I gazed down at Red Fox, with what I’m guessing must have been a blank or puzzled expression, he continued, “Maybe he needs to go home so he can remember who he is.”
And with that, my dear little friend Red Fox was satisfied; he walked off to play with the others.
Nice insight. May none of us forget where we come from.