Mary held her baby Jesus close to her heart on his birthday. She knew without a doubt how special he was, for hadn’t the angel told her so? I’ve given birth three times: twice to healthy boys, and once to a baby girl who didn’t make it to full term and never got the chance to breathe on her own. However, the baby who best taught me the awe-inspiring lesson about the nature of God’s love was a two and a half pound premature meth addicted newborn abandoned at the emergency room of the hospital where I had been volunteering in the NICU.

The head nurses watch you closely. At first, you’re relegated to stocking, then observing protocol, then diaper changing, then bottle feeding the less at risk infants,  and then finally rocking, an earned privilege.

Anthony already belonged to CPS. I watched week after week baby Anthony go through agonizing drug withdrawal. I say watch because we couldn’t hold him. Touch was an additional painful stimulation to his little system.

Finally one day, The Charge Nurse asked me if I would like to “love on” Anthony. Tremulously, I learned the Kangaroo Hold: Anthony was placed on my bare chest, skin to skin, with several blankets from the warmer covering him. I was petrified and unconsciously holding my breath. Anthony’s monitor went off! The nurse gently prompted me to breathe deeply and watch the monitor. I followed instructions, took a deep breath, and continued breathing rhythmically. Simultaneously, Anthony did the same! My heart and chest against his little heart and chest reminded him to breathe! I relaxed into the moment, humming and rocking, glorying in the holy experience.

What a picture of God’s love! When I am totally exposed, heart to heart with Him, being unable to breathe on my own, He reminds me to breathe. In this state of oneness, God’s purpose becomes clear. 

Be exposed.

Be vulnerable.

Be one with God so that your life produces a yearning for God in others.

Have you given God your whole exposed vulnerable self? Are you connected to Him heart to heart? Is your purpose one with His purpose?

For the word of God is living and active and sharper than any double-edged sword, piercing even to the point of dividing soul from spirit, and joints from marrow; it is able to judge the desires and thoughts of the heart. And no creature is hidden from God, but everything is naked and exposed to the eyes of him to whom we must render an account.

Hebrews 4: 12-13

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