What struck me while sitting in the dark was the way the characters related to each other. In the Hundred Acre Wood, there is a wide variety of personalities, with accompanying idiosyncrasies. Each character brings something different to the table, and each has strengths and weaknesses. In spite of all these differences they all get along. As the story unfolded, there were misunderstandings, miscommunication, and a lot of times when one character would do something that would cause a huge disruption. Through all of the coming and going, no matter what happened, the entire Hundred Acre Wood community was characterized by love, grace, and acceptance. No matter how many times Tigger bounced into a scene and created havoc, there were no harsh words spoken. Even though Owl was a pompous windbag at times, no one was critical. Every time there was potential for conflict, it ended with grace and forgiveness. In the end, each of the characters contributed from their strengths and the goal toward which they had been working was reached.
I know that Winnie the Pooh is a children's story, and some may say that it presents an idealistic view of how things could be in order to teach. Think about it. Jesus said that we enter the Kingdom by becoming like a little child. In the Kingdom, we each bring our weaknesses and quirks, as well as our gifts. We are told to let our relationships with others be full of grace and love. We are told to forgive without end. We are told to look out for each other's interests ahead of our own, as Pooh did when he put his hunt for honey on hold to help rescue Christopher Robin. We are told to lay down our lives for each other.
Winnie the Pooh may be a children's story, but I believe there are a lot of lessons there.