When my husband Patrick worked as an orthopedic physician assistant at Shriner’s Hospital in Minneapolis, one of his duties was to fashion plaster casts for children during the course of their treatment. One day, his patient was a little girl about three years old. She was clinging to her Teddy bear and appeared fearful of the whole experience of being in an orthopedic hospital. The casting room seemed to make her especially anxious. My husband asked her if he could examine her Teddy bear first. When she said yes, he proceeded gently, and then announced that the bear needed a cast just like the one the little girl needed. “Who should go first?” he asked. She indicated her bear, so he fashioned a small cast on the bear’s arm. Amid giggles from the little girl, my husband was able to cast her arm as well. It only took a little creativity and an extra few minutes to put the child at ease.
Mother Theresa said, “We can do no great things; only small things with great love.” How many times, in any given day, do we have an opportunity to exercise this great edict from a tiny nun who gave her entire life and all she had to care for the poor, the marginalized and the dying? I will never be Mother Theresa—not even close—but I pray that God will guide me in my duty to make others on this planet feel they are cared for and cared about. A few kind words, a smile, a small gesture to make life easier for another: these are the currency that we must spend as Christians in a broken and fragmented world. This starts at home. How we treat those closest to us is a clear measure of how we view ourselves and the world around us. I am a child of God; you are too. Let’s do all we can to make each day our best and a little better for those around us.
Gracious and loving God, You shine all around us and in us each moment of each day. We are small miracles that You have created with great love. Touch our hearts and guide our steps so that others see Your marvelous kindness and know You love them too. Amen