Sunday, February 7, 2010

A Prayer for The Saints

“Dreams are like the paint of a great artist. Your dreams are your paints, the world is your canvas. Believing is the brush that converts your dreams into a masterpiece of reality.” ~ Author unknown

Last night, the New Orleans Saints brought home the smashing victory they deserved, and they taught my kids a valuable lesson.

Let me express first that I am not usually a big football fan, but since I consider New Orleans my true home from the heart, I would support anything that comes out of it, even if that means watching a long game I hardly understand the rules of.

Aside from me and my husband – he’s not really a fan of the Saints, but doesn’t dislike them either – my boys were pulling for the Colts. When in the first quarter the Saints were losing by ten points, my oldest son came up to me in the kitchen and said: “I told you that your boys were going to lose, mom” to which I firmly and proudly replied: “ The Saints will win, even if it’s not going to happen until after half time.” My son, not wanting to back down, and giving in to the arrogance of youth, made a huge mistake. “You really think so? I will bet my next week’s allowance that the Colts are going to win.” His brother, not wanting to be left far behind joined in, “I bet my allowance too. The Saints will lose.”

So, I agreed to accept their bets, and I decided to add a little energy to the whole thing; hey, after all, I have spent my whole life praying to the real New Orleans saints, right? Asking for a little favor could not possibly be crossing the line too much. I picked up a red candle, anointed it with success oil, clear the path oil, honey and bay leaves, and then lit it up visualizing the Saints holding the trophy. Then, satisfied that my wish had made it up to the ether and certain of the outcome, I left the game and went upstairs to watch a movie with my daughter, not giving the game another thought.

About ten minutes before the end of the game, my youngest son came upstairs and asked if we could call off the bets because he and his brother were feeling a little guilty siding with a team from up north. Ha! Good try! I refused to dissolve the bets and he walked back downstairs, a little disappointed.

As history had it, the Saints won, and they didn’t just win, they stomped on the Colts! I went downstairs carrying my laptop while Louis Armstrong sang “When the Saints Go Marching in” on Youtube. The moment I got to the bottom of the stairs, six eyes were staring me down – “You cheated, mom!” said the first one, “I never really wanted the Colts to win,” said the other, “I just did it for the money.”

Now, that was really something to talk about. Although in the beginning they were all talking about wanting the Saints to win, they allowed themselves to be swayed by the opinions of others over the odds of each team. Since the Colts were favored by many, they assumed it was not possible for the Saints to win. “You know nothing about football, mom” said my oldest son, “I didn’t think you could predict right when so many others said the Saints would lose.”

And indeed, that taught them a valuable lesson. Rather than sticking by what they believed, they followed what others were saying, and they lost track of what they wanted. In my heart, I had no doubt the Saints would win, especially after I set my wish and let it get out into the Universe. As Voltaire once said: “Faith consists in believing when it is beyond the power of reason to believe.” I hope that from now on, my kids will learn to think with their own minds and put a little more faith in the power of prayer.

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