Precious: A Grandfather’s Lesson

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CS_Grandparents_pixabayThe first time I held my new granddaughter, I spontaneously said to her, “You are precious.” She is now a toddler. I still say this to her, often. I put my hands on her cheeks, she looks at me with her eternity-deep brown eyes, and I say simply “Precious.” She has started to do the same to me. The first time this happened I was stunned. I have not thought of myself as precious and no one had said that to me, in those words, in living memory.

Recently we were at a family gathering and a middle-aged man I know came up and started talking. I was holding this granddaughter and I introduced her. She looked at this man, leaned over, put her hand on his cheek and said, “Precious,” to him. He melted right there in front of me, then, holding her hand, said simply, “Thank you.” This man is not and has never been married and I doubt he remembers anyone in his lifetime ever telling him he is precious. But this beautiful, sinless child, whose guardian angel there with her was also in the presence of God, announced and proclaimed him to be “precious.” And so he is. So are we all.

We Are All Precious to Him

God has told us so. “He will rejoice over you with gladness; he will quiet you by his love; he will exult over you with loud singing. “ (Ze 3:17). We are all precious to Him, He knows our names:

“But now, this is what the Lord says: he who created you, Jacob, he who formed you, Israel: “Do not fear, for I have redeemed you; I have summoned you by name; you are mine . . . For I am the Lord your God, the Holy One of Israel, your Savior; . . . Since you are precious in My sight, since you are honored and I love you, I will give other men in your place and other peoples in exchange for your life. Do not be afraid, for I am with you” (Is. 43:4).

Psalm 139 tells us that each of us is “fearfully and wonderfully made” by God. How precious is each person to God? So precious that all of one’s life, every moment, God wants each person back with Him, with Him forever, happy in heaven. God never stops – each person is precious to Him right up to the last moment of a person’s life. It is no accident or wild luck that so many persons turn to God as their lives are ending, some just a few moments before death. Near-death conversions, some even death bed conversions, attest not only to God’s mercy but to His love for each precious person; people, to name a few, like John Wayne, Tennessee Williams, Gary Cooper, Oscar Wilde, Patricia Neal, Dutch Shultz, and Buffalo Bill, all of whom died Catholic.

Fear Not

Be a precious one of God, because you are, and see that each person you encounter is also His precious one. Progress from one far end of the value spectrum – God Don’t Make No Junk – to the other extreme: I am precious to God. And then look at everyone else, realizing each of them is also of ultimate precious value to Him. “Are not five sparrows sold for two pennies? And not one of them is forgotten before God. Why, even the hairs of your head are all numbered. Fear not; you are of more value than many sparrows. (Lk 12:6-7)

Copyright © Guy McClung 2016

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2 thoughts on “Precious: A Grandfather’s Lesson”

  1. What a precious lesson for our frantic times–to be still and see the radiance in others. As our newly ordained Priest Fr. John Gribowitz says, “So the Jesus in us sees the Jesus in others.”

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