I have two out of 5 grandsons that I watch once per week, and I love having them and love learning their personalities. My four-year-old grandson Wyatt was getting food out of our refrigerator one day and I was standing right next to him letting him pick what he wanted. When he shut the drawer to the fridge his finger went into a place it shouldn’t/couldn’t fit. Wyatt is pretty tough and can take a lot of bumps and scrapes without much thought, but this made him scream like something was really broken. I scooped him up in my arms and his screaming became sobbing, almost heartbroken sounding. I prayed that Jesus would take the pain away but stopped at some point because his sobbing started to break my heart and I started to tear up. After his sobbing began to subside I set him on my counter so I could assess the damage to his finger, and when I pulled back from our embrace he saw my eyes and kind of cocked his head, studying them. Then he said, “I love you Grandma”. There was this sense I got in that moment that Wyatt really knew he was loved to the point that I was experiencing this pain with him. And it touched this little 4-year-old so much that he let me know how he feels about me too.
I realize a lot of moms and grandmas probably cry with their kids when they get hurt. I was not one of those. My first usual reaction would have been teaching, then consoling and not really feeling much for them because I was also pretty numb. The old me would have said, “see that thing there, that’s what squished your finger” and then I would hold him…but by then the loving, nurturing mojo is completely ruined by that little teaching moment that just HAD to happen.
Later that day after the boys had gone home I was thinking about the incident (his finger was just fine, maybe even healed on the spot) and I started sobbing. God in a moment helped me see how the old me would react but also the old me expected that’s how God reacts to my pain too. Especially if I felt I was the cause of that pain. He showed me the truth, He holds me and feels the pain right along with me! He gave me and Wyatt the beautiful working picture when God loves unconditionally, not teaching, not holding us in an unfeeling way all the while thinking, “well, she did it to herself!”. God holds me and feels my pain with me! He is good always.