I have noticed a disturbing trend over the past couple of years and every time I notice it I become more agitated – to the point where I’m ready to stop people when I see it happening and lecture them – but then I would be one of those creepy old ladies who is a little too intrusive – but then it might be worth it.
My problem? I can’t stand the fact that I see fewer and fewer parents holding their children’s hands. I know it sounds silly, but when I watch a two-year-old toddling across a parking lot with mom on one side and dad on the other – and neither are holding that small person’s wonderful little hand – it upsets me. Or when I see a mother standing on a sidewalk with her hands on her hips yelling – no – SCREAMING at a 4-year-old for not keeping up – instead of holding that little one’s hand and walking at their pace for a short time – it upsets me. Or when a parent is too busy taking pictures of the moment instead of walking side-by-side holding hands and experiencing the moment with their child – that upsets me.
Don’t these people know they are missing one of the most wonderful partS of having children in their lives – the feeling of that tiny hand inside theirs? It’s not just about safety or keeping children on task – it’s about a child placing their trust in you to keep them safe. It’s about a child knowing through that vital sense of touch, that they are important in your life – you are willing to slow down, take a moment, walk at their pace and see through their eyes.
For me – holding a child’s hand brings a smile to my face and can make the worst day a wonderful day. I know there are days when it isn’t fun (I have four children of my own – so believe I know) – but I also know that a simple touch can change everything. No matter how frustrated I am with my children or grandchildren – I know that when I hold their hands (even my grown up children) – it is a moment filled with grace. I’m sure it is similar to holding the hand of God. I know that holding that little hand makes me want to be a better person and see the world with a child’s sense of wonder and happiness.
So don’t pass up holding that little hand when it is offered to you — because you will be passing up the chance to hold God’s grace in your hand.