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A Safe Place . . .

WillFor the past week my daughter and I have been visiting my sister in Ft. Myers, Florida. Also here is my sister’s oldest daughter, with her two young boys. Nathan is two and a half, lots of fun, and quite a handful. Well, he’s two. That says it all. Will, the baby, is only three and a half months old, and a chubby little charmer. He smiles and smiles and loves nothing more than being held. And everyone here is happy to oblige.

I’ve been thinking about this. We are all a bit like Will, don’t you think? It’s comforting to feel someone has our back, that if we’re sad or upset or simply don’t feel well, we can count on getting a hug and smile from someone who loves us. Smiles and hugs equate to being held and being safe. We all need a safe place when the weight of the world bears down on us.

That’s the way I always thought of my marriage. It was my safe haven. No matter what happened to me out in the world – betrayal by a friend, nasty remark from a boss, upsetting encounter, I knew I could go home, close the door, and be in my safe place with the one person in the world who cared most about me and would always have my back.

Will must feel that way, too. Tummy ache? Hungry? Scared? All bad things will go away once he feels loving arms encircling him and keeping him safe. Will is lucky. He has adoring parents and a plethora of people who love him and want nothing more than for him to be happy. But looking at him, seeing how much he’s loved, I couldn’t help but think how many thousands, perhaps millions, of children there are in the world who don’t have that security and safety. Who are exposed to ugliness, hatred, and cruelty every day.

Thinking of this is a reminder to count my blessings. And to share some of those blessings with those children who desperately need a safe place, too.

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