“OPEN TO LIFE”  by Elizabeth Hansen

One dreary morning, I was dragging my kids across a parking lot, already late.  The three-year-old hated all her clothes, and her younger brother was imitating her whining flawlessly.  Worn down from the ordeal of leaving the house, I looked at them trudging behind me with the stricken thought that, somehow, this all had to do with being “OPEN TO LIFE”.

Honestly, I’d started regarding the phrase as somewhat cliché/, or, depending on its timing, an irrelevant question for me and my husband. But there in the drizzle, I realized that “OPEN TO LIFE’ is more than a monthly question of possible conception. It’s not just about, “Should we have another baby?”

It’s about being open, in the most trustful sense, to a God who fills even these moments of exhaustion and tedium with his promise of abundant life.  It means literally FACING LIFE WITH AN OPEN POSTURE, saying to its Author, “SPEAK, YOUR SERVANT IS LISTENING”.

What are you teaching me about myself as I wait impatiently for my kids? What are you showing me in this mess of picked at dinners and dirty chairs? Who is begging for my touch?

It’s easy to shut down against intrusions, be it a child at the bathroom door, or grace ready at the heart. I’d like to say that morning drastically changed for the better. It didn’t. I was still tired, my kids were still whiny, and the weather was still terrible. BUT I WAS MORE OPEN. AND THAT WAS ENOUGH.

Elizabeth Hansen lives in Connecticut with her husband and three young children.

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