Bless the little ones

Butterfly kisses

Is there anything more delightful and healing than the innocence of pure love?

It has been two days and I am still deeply moved by the adorable encounter Miko had with a neighbour’s baby girl.  What is it about that encounter that is such a peak moment for me? Why was that tableau somehow so healing for me? I found myself revisiting the photos and memories and pondering.

I started thinking of some things both these little ones have in common:

They have no pretense and artifice;
They are always fully present to the present moment;
They love wholeheartedly;
They are vulnerable and are not ashamed of their dependence on their care-givers;
They express gratitude and delight exuberantly;
They are who they are and are incapable of trying to be otherwise;
They embody their belovedness by their delight in the moment and their joy in play.

For a little while, they were absorbed in their meet cute and nothing else seemed to matter. They remind me of the state my soul longs to be in, even in this fallen world. In this world where sophistication, strength, power and total independence are sought after through drive and competition, where the weak are exploited and power almost universally leads to violation and abuse, how often do I feel safe to be imperfect, vulnerable, and courageously present to each moment? How often do I delight in the gift of another’s presence and laugh and love wholeheartedly?

Yet that is truly what my soul longs after, to be a child again. But what I yearn for is not the original innocence I have lost, but a second innocence – a deeper and more lasting innocence that comes with rediscovering joy and wonder without denying all that is broken and ugly in myself or the world. I long to laugh and love with abandon even while knowing that betrayal and pain may lurk around the corner. And I know my longing can and will be fulfilled if I just let myself be held by Love. Somehow, in a way I cannot see and could never understand, Love will make me an eternal child whose innocence and vulnerability will be a balm for others who long – perhaps without knowing – to be such a child again too.

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