Today is my first day back on the job after a week off. It’s been a long time since I’ve taken a vacation during Spring Break, right after the big rush of Easter Sunday, but I have to say it was great timing. Our whole family, and our dearest friends, had a great time walking a total of 18 miles (according to our phone apps) throughout Disneyland and Disney’s California Adventure. We pulled two 14 hour days that began at 7:30am at the front gate, and ended after the night shows at 10pm. Brutal and beautiful! We honestly had a great time, and I’m proud of myself for a few reasons. First, my justice streak tends to come out on these trips and I usually make far too many observations about how expensive everything is, which doesn’t add to anyone’s level of enjoyment. This time I just let it all go in a wonderous free-fall of spending, without saying one cynical word about it. Second, I’m also proud of the way I held back on my fleshly desire to cross check the many stray, slow, and lost park walkers who constantly bumped into me as I made my way across Disneyland. I did a good job just thinking about a little body bump, but not actually doing it.
There was this one part of the park that made me chuckle, because to me it’s soooo Disney. It’s this photo of fake ice that’s all throughout the park. At each one of their beverage stands, Disney has perfected this fake ice with specific holes to place seemingly cold beverages to tantalize you into coughing up $6 or more to quench your thirst. That, to me, is the definition of the “magic” of Disney – eliciting strong emotions whether they be sentimental, happy, or sappy through some form of smoke and mirrors. I know I’m going to take a beating for writing this from my readers and friends who love all things Disney, but let me just say that I’m glad God doesn’t work like Disney. God (or religion) is often accused of the same thing I just observed about Disney – eliciting strong emotions through smoke and mirrors – but the truth is the emotions, the joy, and the transformation God elicits isn’t a trick or some effect created by lighting and imaginative facades. God does real things in the real world. and makes real changes in real lives. Disney is fun for a time, but I’m a bigger fan of the real thing God is doing.