Monday, July 20, 2015

The Puppet

By Angeline M Duran Santiago

In my earlier days as a teacher, using puppets was a big deal for me. I enjoyed being able to grab the attention of my students and keep them involved in what I was teaching. Honestly, I enjoyed changing into a different person, changing my voice and just being silly. Later on in church, I put together a puppet house and went from just my own church to being invited many times all over New York. 

There is nothing that compares to the faces of children who are interacting with the puppets. They truly believe this "person or child" is relating to them. 

As I was going through my bins that I haven't used in a long time, I found my precious puppets. Yes, I still have them and yes, I still love to make them come alive. Remembering those precious moments in my life when I constantly had them out, a thought came into my mind. I loved being the master planner behind the scenes. There was a joy creating stories, lessons, character situations and songs to give each puppet a personality, a purpose, and their own existence.

Even though I always looked for the best scenarios for my stories, I know that in real life, we don't always have a life without struggles or pain. Real life includes challenges, overcoming obstacles and using our minds to make choices that don't always end up being the best ones. 

God is not a master puppeteer. He doesn't write out a story for us that includes good and bad and then place his hand into our mouths and minds to manipulate and control the outcomes. God allows us to face each day with choices and free will. He gives us the tools to succeed and shows us we have the choice to trust in Him as we live out our own personal stories, or we can choose to do our own thing. 

After each performance, I'd place my puppets away in a plastic bag. I didn't want any dust on them or for them to get dirty. They had to stay there until next time. Isn't it wonderful that God doesn't put us away on a shelf when we mess up? Isn't is something to think about that He doesn't keep up on a shelf for display of our victories and then covers us in a corner when we are in our moments of insecurity and confusion. God doesn't sit around thinking about a script or a lesson. It's not about a test that God gives us for us to pass and he stands by to see if we'll pass or not. I use to think that way, but I believe differently. God is not Zeus, watching to see us fall and fail, and do nothing on our behalf. 

You are I are not puppets on the earth waiting to be given a voice, a thought, or a mission. We are God's masterpiece, with minds and hearts that can do great things. We have a lot to say and a lot to share. The next time you think you're not worthy. Remember that He has made you so unique!