This was my view for most of the morning today—my not yet one month old granddaughter Hellon asleep in a “baby sling” in my arms and attached to me (I was “wearing the baby” as they say) while her Mom got a few things done around the house. As I said to my son Keith when he came in for lunch: “This is heaven.” As so many experienced grandparents have told me—there is nothing like it!
My own first pregnancy began during Advent, my second ended shortly after Advent and now during this Advent, I am blessed with a few weeks of being with a tiny, vulnerable infant . . . reminded of how much God loves us, that God became one of us in a form so dependent on others for care. So fragile, and yet so resilient. So helpless—and so much in control of the adults seeking to care for her, as we do our best to respond to her ever changing (and sometimes mysterious) needs.
I am reminded once again that the love we have for children and for each other is a glimpse of the amazing love God has for us—and I can’t help but think of the hymn, written about 30 years ago by Brian Wren, “When God is a Child”. Here’s the refrain:
When God is a child there’s joy in our song.
The last shall be first and the weak shall be strong,
and none shall be afraid.
This has been such a challenging year, and the challenges are not yet over—and yet, as has also been said—every baby born is a sign that God has not given up on us yet. May this Advent, unusual though it may be, be filled with Hope, and Peace, Joy, and Love—and may 2021 bring us the end of the COVID pandemic—and the chance to live into the lessons we’ve learned from it.
Blessings, peace, and hope,