See what great love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called children of God! And that is what we are! The reason the world does not know us is that it did not know him. – 1 John 3:1

Les Miserables opened in movie theaters on Christmas Day. As a fan of the show, I was blessed with the opportunity to see the movie as one of my Christmas presents. I enjoyed the movie – the way the songs were filmed, showing the emotion of the actors in ways the stage couldn’t effectively convey. One song that I found particularly moving was one that had been written specifically for the film, called “Suddenly.”

Jean Valjean has made a deathbed promise to a woman that he would care for her orphaned daughter, Cosette. He has found her and is now traveling to start their life together. As she sleeps in the carriage, Valjean’s thoughts are captured in the following song.

“Suddenly I see
Suddenly it starts
Can two anxious hearts
Beat as one?

Yesterday I was alone
Today you walk beside me
Something still unclear
Something not yet here
Has begun.

Suddenly the world
Seems a different place
Somehow full of grace
Full of light.

How was I to know
That so much hope
Was held inside me?
What has passed is gone
Now we journey on
Through the night.

How was I to know at last
That happiness can come so fast?
Trusting me the way you do
I’m so afraid of failing you
Just a child who cannot know
That danger follows where I go
There are shadows everywhere
And memories I cannot share

Nevermore alone
Nevermore apart
You have warmed my heart
Like the sun.
You have brought the gift of life
And love so long denied me.

Suddenly I see
What I could not see
Something suddenly
Has begun.”

Speak to most any parent and they will tell you how the birth of their first child brought about a change in them. There is something that happens to a person when they gaze upon their child for the first time – a previously undeveloped portion of their heart opens and a love unlike any other is born. What we also see is a love that is returned from that child – a totally dependent, unconditional love born out of the need for nothing more in life than to have full access to the love that can only come from the parents from whom the child was born. Though he is not Cosette’s biological father, her immediate attachment to him and the love he has begun to show her has struck him to the core. In just a moment he is forever changed; sharing the love of a parent to a child who returns it without reservation can do that to even the hardest of hearts.

I’d like to think that this relationship is the closest example of the love that God has for his earthly creation. This isn’t exactly a crazy leap on my part. After all, God refers to Himself as the Father who loves and cares for His children here on earth. We have access to Him at any time, are showered with His love continually, and can take heart in knowing that He is guiding us in the directions that are always best for us, no matter where life or our poor choices may lead us. God didn’t create us to be His friend, his neighbor, or those folks we send a Christmas card to every year simply because they always send us one and we don’t want to offend. We are His children, with all of the honors and privileges of being heirs of the Creator of the universe.

Sleep easy in the arms of your Father tonight, but before you do, be sure hug your children tightly, showing them the fullness of the love that you know in your Heavenly Father.

About day1of1

Author, Speaker, Educator, Husband, Father of two and follower of the One.
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