I love this picture. It’s been around so you’ve probably already seen it, but I want to comment on it today.
I haven’t seen this as much as Marti has, but she tells me that on at least a couple of occasions, out in public, Chandler has volunteered to help a woman struggling with a fussy baby by offering to hold the baby, and each time, the baby has immediately quieted down in Chandler’s arms. It’s amazing that a mother would trust a stranger like Chandler — and a teenager no less — in the first place, but perhaps they somehow see something in his transparency that they can trust. You can actually see it in this picture. There is a visual communication going on here — a sort of mutual understanding, as if these two old souls have met before somewhere, somehow. It’s almost as if we are privy to a silent conversation.
Actually, a similar thing happened between Chandler and his grandmother the only time they met. Chandler was about six months old and my mother had lost track of her senses to severe dementia months prior, but they took one look at each other and both knew exactly who they were and what was going on. They even spoke — Chandler, in gibberish, and my mother acknowledging, “Well I’m not surprised!” Amazing. It was the most coherent she had been in weeks.
So we’ve designated Chandler as the baby whisperer. He sees; he hears; he understands.
Your assignment this morning is to put yourself in Jocelyn’s place in the arms of God and take on her trust, contentment, and utter dependence. This is true worship whereby we say “Abba, Father,” and everything is okay. “And because we are His children, God has sent the Spirit of His Son into our hearts, prompting us to call out, “‘Abba, Father’” (Galatians 4:6).
And then turn it around and identify with Chandler, because both roles are part of our responsibility here on earth. In the first few weeks of Jocelyn’s life, her mother requested that we wash our hands before we held her. I thought that might have been a bit unnecessary at first, but I get it now. Especially after reading this: “Wash and make yourselves clean. Take your evil deeds out of my sight; stop doing wrong. Learn to do right; seek justice. Defend the oppressed. Take up the cause of the fatherless; plead the case of the widow” (Isaiah 1:16-17). We need to wash up before we pick up someone who is helpless.
Which do you identify with the most today, and why?