Crying Out

23 Jan

I work at Wilmore Daycare Center in Wilmore, KY.  This is a very small town, Mayberry, if you will, and it is literally at the end of the road.  Leave Wilmore and you will drive into the Kentucky river.  As you can imagine most people know each other quite well and all their kids play together, etc.. Asbury Seminary and College are host to those of us who are not ‘natives.’  However, it doesn’t take long until you become part of the family and begin to know and understand the unique rhythms of small town life. 

My job at the daycare is not glamorous, nor does it pay many bills, but it is a blessing just the same.  Although, there are those days when I must remind myself frequently of this blessing!  If you know me, you know that I love kids.  From newborns to youth, my soft spot is kid-sized, especially for the ornery ones!  Rotten to the core, but you just can’t help but have a few favorites.  Still, nothing beats snuggling the sweet cherubs in the infant room, most of the time.  When I went in today to relieve the nursery worker for her much needed and deserved 30 minute break, I was greeted by not one crying baby, but four ear-piercing cries.  I drew a deep breath.

I have taken care of my fair share of babies, fussy to serene, but never 5 at once!  Rebecca smiled tentatively and said she wanted to try and keep them up till 12, and told me they didn’t need to be changed or fed till then either.  Wishing me the best, she left the room.  The cries got louder, if that is possible!  Having no options, but to hold, rock, sing, and play, I tried to soothe all four infants with my two arms, hands, feet, eyes, and one voice.  Thankfully, Jake, the 5th baby, was content to swing in his chair and drool.  Bless him! 

I picked up Emerson, the loudest of the four, knowing she likes to be held, and slowly her squalling subsided to gentle whimpers, which seemed to calm some of the other ones as well.  I hummed with the music and for a brief moment, all was calm.  It was the calm before the storm.  As if cued by some unseen force, the other three babies belted out a sad cry in unison.  My heart sank.  I walked to each child in turn, trying to comfort them the best I could, as I held Emerson and tried to keep her from crying again.  I felt helpless, knowing that I couldn’t give them what they needed until Rebecca came back at 12.  I whispered a quiet plea to the Lord, wanting to ease their suffering and mine.  

Within moments of my prayer, the nursery door creaked open, and Rebecca came sailing in, 15 minutes early, and became a whirlwind of action.  She directed me to place Emerson in her crib with her bottle as she swept Damien in her arms and placed him in a crib with blanket and bottle.  Two down.  I then moved to Luigi, wiped his poor nose, changed his diaper, and placed him in his crib as Rebecca handed him his bottle and tucked his blanket around him.  The only sounds left were the lullabies drifting overhead and one plaintive cry coming from our youngest babe, our Kindergarten teacher, Mrs. Noah’s,  new baby girl, Kylie.  Rebecca sighed, looked at me and said, “She just cries.  Sometimes you just have to try holding her.”  She told me she had heard their cries all the way in the office and had to come help.  I thanked her profusely, and with that, she went back to her break. 

I looked up, and only 5 minutes had passed.  I was in awe of how efficient she had been and how she knew exactly what was needed to sate each child.  I scooped up the soft, little bundle of sweetness and sat down in the rocker next to Jake, whose head was drooping by now.  As I rocked, Kylie’s crying slowly subsided, and she stared at me, wondering who I was.  I managed to coax a few smiles from her as I cooed and nuzzled her downy head.  We sat in this peaceful silence for another 15 minutes, until Rebecca returned, refreshed and ready to take over.  I was on to the 2’s and 3’s and the rest of my day! 

As I drove home, I contemplated my day and it struck me how quickly Rebecca had come in and seen to the needs of the infants, creating calm from chaos almost immediately.  It reminded me of someone else who takes life’s chaos and creates peace. 

Just as Rebecca heard the babies crying and hastened to meet their needs, God is ready, willing, and able to do the same for each of His children.  But how much greater is the love that the Father lavishes on us, that we should be called children of God (1 John 3:1, adapted). 

 God hears our cries, our complaints, our pleas, our prayers, and He does hasten to our sides.  He knows exactly what we need and when we need it.  Even when we don’t feel His presence or have the answer we desire, God is there, and He comforts and provides as only He can.  His will and timing are always perfect.  God knows that just like the newborn babe, sometimes we don’t need anything except to be held in a loving embrace and know a sense of comfort and peace.  God alone is capable of knowing and fulfilling all our needs, for He created us, knows us intimately, and loves us unconditionally.  He is the great Comforter and Healer.  Nothing can separate us from the love of Christ, and God our Father.  So do not worry that your cries will not be heard, cry out to Jesus, He will hasten to your side and bring calm after the storm.        

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