This morning I cradled my newest granddaughter in my arms. She smiled at me again and again, her eyes twinkling with recognition and delight. I'm not sure why she started smiling at me before she smiled at anyone else in the family. I like to think it is because I was there when she was born and didn't leave her side for a day.
Slowly her sparkling eyes began to fade under the flickering cover of her eyelids. Her body settled ever more contentedly into my arms as she drifted off to sleep in the safety of my arms. She was the perfect picture of trust.
Suddenly her peaceful face contorted. She squirmed and gave a yelp of pain. Her morning meal was working its way through her still developing digestive system. This is an all too familiar occurrence.
In some baby way, Ashlee seems to know I am doing what I can to comfort her. I don't think she doubts her safety or my efforts. But pain is pain. I have watched her smile at me between her cries, as if to assure me she is happy I am holding her and helping her through the hurt.
In a God-flash moment this morning, I see myself in Ashlee. I am nestled in the arms of my heavenly Father. How tenderly God holds me even as I squirm from the discomforts of my situations or cry in pain. I recognize that my pain does not remove me from his arms or his competent care. This is why Jesus tells us to become like little children who rest unquestioningly in the arms of the one who cares for them.