The brakes!!! I really should have remembered the brakes. I had bundled ten month old Gabriel quickly into his stroller, eager to get outside and begin our grand adventure! I started to push the stroller along the driveway. It was hard going, either Gabriel had put on considerable weight of I was suffering a bout of weakness. Suddenly I realized I had not released the brakes. I reached down and did so, and then we were off.
It was a lovely November afternoon, blue skies, warm, a gentle breeze, perfect for an afternoon stroll. Our driveway curves and has small inclines. Gabriel seemed as happy as I was to be outside. He was smiling and making all kinds of noises and wiggling his feet. I walked by the side of the stroller as I pushed it, so I could see what he was doing. Sometimes we went fast, then slow then in a circle. We were both having a grand time.
Gabriel looked so adorable, that cute little face. I could not resist any longer. I stopped the stroller and, bending down in front of him, gave him a big kiss (I tried not to leave any lipstick on those pudgy cheeks, as I had been known to do before!). Then I just stood there looking into his eyes. As I did so, the small silver cross I was wearing slid out from inside my shirt and was swinging back and forth. Gabriel seeing it, reached for it and grabbed a hold of it with his little hand. He did not move it from side to side or try and pull it from my neck, he just held onto it while he looked up at me.
As I stood there I heard the Lord quietly speak to me, “Melissa, grab ahold of the cross, do not ever let go.” Such simple words, such a sacred moment. As we work with children in any capacity, we need to share with them all that Jesus accomplished for us on the cross, the incredible sacrifice on our behalf and the life that we can now have.
So dear friends, children young and children old, what is it that I wish for you now and in the days ahead? It is simply this, that you would reach out and grab a hold of the cross and never let go, for there we find Jesus our very life, who has given everything for us.