Sometimes, when my mind spins trying to process too much useless information, when my mental hard drive is full, when external noise overwhelms and unsettles, God sends someone special to remind me what matters. Today was that kind of day.
I started early in the morning, running errands, trying to squeeze them all in before an 11:30 appointment. On my last stop, I couldn’t find what I was looking for and couldn’t find a store clerk. Irritated and running late, I rushed up and down the aisles like a masked madwoman. As I turned a corner, there she was – a tiny, beautiful, curious child with Down syndrome.
She stood across the aisle from me, staring, unmasked – in every sense of the word. My mask hid my smile, but she was looking into my eyes. She dashed across the aisle and threw herself at me, clutching my legs. Her mom looked up, startled, and apologized immediately. No need, I said, rubbing the little girl’s back as she looked up into my eyes with a bright smile, hanging on tight. She couldn’t communicate clearly with words, but her every move spoke affection, trust, vulnerability, and love.
As she took my hand, I forgot all about my schedule, frustration, and uncompleted tasks. I forgot about the mostly negative morning news, the politicos screaming on the radio, the depressing analysts. The buzzing in my head faded; time stopped. I stood on holy ground.
At just the right moment, she ran back to mom, smiling and waving goodbye. I left the store and drove home in silence. This little person living in the eternal now, this tiny vessel of the living God, had pulled me right into that place with her, reminding me what matters and what doesn’t.
I never did find what I was looking for, but I found what I needed:
a glimpse of the kingdom of God on earth.
The people brought their babies and small children to Jesus so that he might lay his hands on them to bless them. When the disciples saw this, they scolded the parents and told them to stop troubling the Master. But Jesus called for the parents, the children, and his disciples to come and listen to him. Then he told them, “Never hinder a child from coming to me. Let them all come, for God’s kingdom realm belongs to them as much as it does to anyone else. They demonstrate to you what faith is all about. Learn this well: unless you receive the revelation of the kingdom realm the same way a little child receives it, you will never be able to enter in.” – Luke 18:15-17 (Passion Translation)
Every child you encounter is a divine appointment.
Wess Stafford, Compassion International