Today’s Word from Rev. David Bieniek…  

I remember the day my nephew Jonathan was born. I remember seeing him for the first time. As many mothers do, my sister asked me, “Would you like to hold him?” Of course, I did. When we hold a baby, we know that we are holding the world in our hands; we pray and hope; we imagine and dream. He wriggled; I smiled. My sister shared her precious child with me, entrusted me with his care for just a while.

My favorite statue of Mary and Jesus is called “Our Lady of the Whole World.” Created by a group of nuns called The Little Sisters of Jesus, this statue is different from any others I have ever seen. It is so very humble, and so very human. Both Mary and Jesus are active; the baby Jesus, with his hands reaching out and a smile on his face, seems to be saying, “Hold me, nurture me, care for me.” Mary, holding Jesus in her outstretched arms is, like mothers often do, offering him for our care, sharing him with others.

What if this were our attitude? We can both hold Christ close, but as a mother offers her child to the care of others, we can offer Christ to the Whole World. How will we hold him? How will we nurture him? How will we care for him? So, how will you offer Jesus to the world this week?

Will you, like Mary, draw the circle wide, and wider still, sharing the love of Jesus with others? If each of us shared just a little, we could accomplish a lot. The Christ you hold within you can spread healing, hope, joy, and peace. Like Mary, give birth this day to a Jesus who has his arms spread wide with a grin on his face and says, “Pick me up, hold me, and take me with you into the world.”

In this time of social distancing, our world may feel pretty small, but find ways to expand your world. Hold those you love close to your heart in prayer. Find ways of reaching out to friends, family, and others who you miss. Nurture each other by finding ways of letting people know you see them and acknowledge them, even behind the masks. Smile with your eyes. Care for others by contributing in any way you can to the causes that speak to your heart. Hold Jesus out to the world, arms open wide.

Rev. Dave Bieniek

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