There are many reasons why Christmas is special to me, many reasons why it is the second most special time of the year for me (second only to Easter). However, last year, Christmas became infinitely more special. To explain why, I must take a few steps back.
The Gift of Peace in God’s Will
My husband and I began trying to have a child after a couple of years into our marriage. That was eight years ago, and we have not been able to conceive. We have been to the Vitae Clinic in Austin, Texas, which I highly recommend to anyone trying to conceive. While we were not able to become pregnant ourselves, I know many people who have through the help of this wonderful clinic. They were always very kind, always mindful of the struggle we were going through. I could go on and on about the kind and thoughtful ways in which they treated us and others struggling with infertility, but that is the subject for a different blog. After some time, and with a sense of peace from God to do so, we decided to discontinue trying to conceive (in the sense we would not focus on the days of the month I was fertile, etc.). We decided to leave whether we became pregnant or not up to God and His Will for our lives.
I still very much continue to have maternal longings, and I would be lying if I said every month when it is time for my period to begin I didn’t have a little hope this time would be different…that this time there would be a joyful surprise and I would be pregnant. The longings for a child of our own have never completely gone away, but there is a peace God has given us that there are other ways in which he would like us to live out our maternal and paternal longings.
Like all other suffering and struggles I experience in life, I’ve learned to offer this one up to God. And God, being who He is, is never outdone in generosity! Which brings me to last Christmas and the great gift He gave me.
“For he says to Moses:
‘I will show mercy to whom I will,
I will take pity on whom I will.’”
You see, God knows us so well; He knows our hearts, our desires, and our wounds. And while He has given me the joy and the ability to fulfill and live out my maternal longings in other ways, He knows there is still a place in my heart that aches, especially at mass, when I see families with small children, for a child of my own. Please know, I also get tremendous joy when I see these families as well, for I believe that must be the greatest joy a parent must have (or at least I think it must be, as I don’t have children of my own) – the joy of bringing their children up to know more about Jesus, and even better, to get to know Him personally as their Friend and Heavenly Father. I know for me, that is one of the main reasons for my great longing for a child, and the greatest joy I have of being a godmother to our godsons and aunt to our nephews – to be able to be a part of forming these young boys so they may grow closer to God. And God, while leading me to live out my maternal longing in other ways, knows I still have this place in my heart for a child of our own.
The Gift of Baby Jesus and Healing
In meditation in the Eucharistic Chapel last year, as I was offering up this desire once again, I felt Mary come to me and give me Baby Jesus to hold – and not just for a short time, but whenever I needed to, whenever that desire to hold a child came up. I felt in my heart she let me know I could always hold Baby Jesus in my arms.
Now holding any baby is a great joy for me. The love and purity in a baby’s eyes are so beautiful, but holding Baby Jesus is something altogether more wonderful. It is, like all experiences of being with Jesus, a healing experience. When I am in meditation in the Eucharistic Chapel and holding Baby Jesus, I feel a great sense of joy, warmth, and love. It is a love that penetrates my heart and soul, and I feel as though it is healing this ache I have for a child of my own, little by little. When I see families in church now, I feel more of the joy, and less of the ache I used to. And I always experience Mary rushing to me with Baby Jesus for me to hold.
Therefore, this is my purpose in always writing about the Healing Heart of Jesus. He truly heals us, if we only give ourselves completely, all our desires, joys and suffering, over to Him. He is the only one who can heal us, because He is the one who created us and knows us most intimately.
“You formed my inmost being;
you knit me in my mother’s womb.”
And not only does He heal us, He transforms us though His healing into something purer, into more of who He created us to be.
My prayer, always and forever, each day, is that all people, each one of God’s children, come to know Jesus for who He is – their Father, their Friend, their Creator, their Redeemer, their Lord and Savior, their Beloved. And in knowing Him, may all people be transformed through the Healing Love of His Most Sacred Heart.