Tuesday, December 17, 2013

The Touch of a Child

     Advent is a season of hope. It's so easy to be dragged down by worries though that we often let go of that hope. Jesus is the cause of our joy and that's why it's important to prepare for His coming as a baby, but also as our King. Here's a little insight I got during Sunday Mass recently:
      It was just after Communion and I was having a hard time focusing on my prayers. My eyes were wandering about, watching each person as they approached the alter. The last man in line was hard to miss; he was a big guy, probably about 6'2 and 250 lbs. As he walked away, he sat down in the front pew for a brief moment next to the tiniest little alter server girl that I've ever seen. I'm guessing it was his granddaughter, because he had a big, tender smile on his face as he looked at her. She got a big grin on her face too, and reached her tiny little arms as far around him as they could go, barely covering his belly in a hug. In that moment, I knew one of the reasons that Jesus came to the world as a baby.
     The touch of a child brings healing like no other. Just looking at that little face, gazing so trustingly and loving back up at yours, moves hearts. They're so quick to say "I love you" and mean it from the bottom of their little hearts that overflow with love. As much as adults take care of children, the children take care of our rougher edges and bring us back to simplicity. There's something about their innocence and their smile that can break down walls.
     Think, then, for a minute about Jesus growing up. He started off as a little baby, crying and completely helpless. Picture the joy that His first smile must have brought to His family, and the pride when He tottered around, taking His first steps. What did His first laugh sound like? What was His first word? Then think about how much healing He must have brought by smiling at the people around Him, innocently saying "I love you", maybe even to a complete stranger. What about how He could have boosted someones confidence by placing His little hand trustingly in theirs? How many people smiled when He laughed and felt their hearts move?
    If you're having a hard time holding on to hope, picture little Jesus trying to reach His tiny arms around you in a hug of pure love. Maybe He can only reach around your leg. Don't you feel your heart melting? :)