I remember a favorite picture from my childhood Bible of today’s Gospel reading from Saint Mark. Jesus sat beneath a tree, His face lit by a warm smile. A small crowd of children surrounded Him. A toddler sat in Jesus’ lap with one hand on His chest. Another child stood close beside Him, Jesus’ arm resting lightly across his shoulders. A few clustered around His feet on the grass, faces uplifted, as if they were listening to a story. I always pictured myself as the tall girl in a pale lavender robe, standing slightly to the side with a shy smile, not quite touching Jesus, her eyes focused on His face with rapt attention. (See Mark 10:13-16.)
Imagining the picture now, I clearly see Jesus with all of those children, present with each one in a different way, soaking up the joy of their friendship. But in my mind’s eye, I see His eyes looking at the girl in lavender standing to the side.
He is looking right at me.
Sometimes, it’s easy to forget that He is, in fact, looking at me. Up to my elbows in the ordinary of my day, I imagine He’s tied up with someone else who is dealing with a tragedy. I assume He’s surrounded by more important people who have His full attention. I feel He’s distant or otherwise occupied.
The truth is, Jesus is always looking right at me. What He wants more than anything is for me to look back at Him and notice His loving gaze, already focused on my face. Jesus came to earth as God-made-Man to have a relationship with me, with you, with every single individual God has ever created or will ever create.
He formed us from dust and then came to walk in our dust with us. He sees all our ways and knows everything about us. Yet, despite all of this, because of all of this, He wants to be with us. He wants to be with me. He wants to be with you.
He calls to each of us: “Let her come to me. Don’t prevent her.”
Want to consecrate your heart to the Sacred Heart? Read the prayer here.
Abbey Dupuy is the Assistant Theological Editor for Blessed is She and writes her life as a homeschooling mama of four frequently barefoot children. She muses about imperfect parenting, practicing gratitude, and celebrating the liturgical year with her young family on her blog. In her spare time, she enjoys running, gardening, coffee, and cookbooks, not usually at at the same time. You can find out more about her here. She is the author of our Blessed Conversations: The Virtues study found here.