Monday, November 12, 2012

Angel Kisses


One tradition I love to do with my son is what I call “angel kisses.” Just before I go to bed at night, after he’s been asleep for quite a while, I tiptoe into his room and give him a kiss on the forehead. He’s a pretty heavy sleeper so he rarely even stirs, but he knows that I do it. If my husband and I are going out for the night and a babysitter will be putting him to bed, I can often quash his protests by reminding him that I will come in and give him an angel kiss when I get home, while he’s asleep. So even if he doesn’t wake up to feel it, he knows I’ll check on him before morning.

One of the reasons I love angel kisses is that they give me the chance to see my son when he is quiet and peaceful. At the age of three, he is often rebellious and petulant and disobedient and frustrating to be around. But seeing him asleep lets me imagine him as his most perfect self: calm, unresisting, and sweet. It reminds me of his potential, and it reassures me that he has that calm, sweet boy inside him who someday will once again emerge from the rebellious tot. After a particularly frustrating day, I look at his sleeping face and think, “Why aren’t you like this all the time? Why can’t you stop fighting against me and obey? Why can’t you trust that I’m doing what’s best for you? Why can’t you just submit your stubborn little will to my greater wisdom?”

And then I realize that God must look at me and think the same thing. But then I also remember that He always sees me through the blood of Christ as that peaceful, obedient servant that I could – and should – be. And I forgive my son for his stubborn spirit, just as God forgives me for mine. And I thank my Father above that He loves me infinitely more than I am humanly capable of loving my own dear children.

“Which of you, if your son asks for bread, will give him a stone? Or if he asks for a fish, will give him a snake? If you, then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give good gifts to those who ask him!" (Matthew 7:9-11)

 

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