Many of us have all had the experience of a baby crying at Mass. I am sure that this can generate various reactions from different people.
Recently Pope Francis said,
“I was watching a mamma who was cuddling and nursing a baby and I said: this is what God does with us, like that mamma. With what tenderness she was trying to comfort and nurse the baby. These are beautiful images. And when it happens that a baby cries in Church, listening to that and feeling that tenderness of a mamma there, like I am witnessing today, and thanks for your witness, and there is tenderness of a mamma which is the symbol of God’s tenderness with us. Never silence a crying baby in Church, never, because it is the voice that attracts Gods tenderness. Thank you.” (Pope Francis)
This beautiful image of a child and a parent is often used in the scripture.
In Isaiah God says, can a mother forget the child that she bore within her womb? I tell you that even if she forgets, I will never forget you!
In Hosea God is compared to a parent holding a child close to their cheek and holding that child with great tenderness and love.
A child needs their parent. They can not thrive without the care of the parent.
As well as providing nourishment, hygiene, shelter etc., the parent provides a massive amount of love.
A good parent also knows that ultimately the child will make their own decisions as to how to live life. Sure, a parent can always be there for an adult child and still offer love and support, however an adult will make their own decisions and live their life.
We are reminded that regardless of our experiences as children, God is always loving, always faithful, always nurturing. God will never let us down.
God will, while always being there for us, never control us. God invites.
How foolish not to accept that invitation!