Remember the little aliens? Remember their line? "You have saved our lives! We are eternally grateful!" They repeated this every time they saw Mr. Potato Head.
Fast forward to 2010 and Toy Story 3. What a bittersweet film! It made me laugh and it made me cry. Once again, I could relate to everything . . . toys that didn't make the cut (Bo Peep), toys to be donated and toys to be kept. I still have several of my childhood dolls in storage, that unfortunately, due to life circumstances (moving to China), that my daughter never got to play with. However, I do look forward to showing them to her one day.
The aliens remained a part of the scene. Fifteen years later, they were still enthusiastically saying to Mr. Potato Head, "You have saved our lives! We are eternally grateful!" Their consistent refrain really made me think about my own life. It's been over 40 years since I made a personal choice to follow Jesus . . . am I still "eternally grateful?" Am I still as enthusiastic as I was way back when?
I went on a hunt to buy some aliens. The Toy Story marketing machine was in full motion, but let me tell you . . . it was hard to find just the little aliens! Or, if I did find an alien, it would be much bigger than I wanted. I finally found a kit that had the miniature figures of Woody, Buzz and the aliens. I purchased it and started carrying an alien in my pocket and and the other two in my purse.
The aliens were reminders (symbolism!) to me to be grateful. I used them to tell others about an "attitude of gratitude." I quit carrying them in my pocket and my purse after about a year and moved them to a desk in the house.
The other day, a friend of mine contacted me telling me that one of her daughters still remembered my story of the "Alien in my Pocket." The daughter recently told her Sunday School class about it . . . a year-and-a-half after I told her the story. It prompted me to take my aliens off the shelf and to start carrying them around again.
God has saved my life . . . I am eternally grateful!