Teenagers come up with the most outrageous of stuff (which is partially why I love them so wildly). On a youth trip to Moab a few years back, while snuggled into our tent on a dark and starry night, one feisty high-schooler shouted out the most random of phrases as her contribution to the word association game we were playing. “God’s nipple,” she exclaimed!
Beyond that week I never actually thought I would have a productive place to use those words together again. Yet, as I typed up the below I could not think of a title more fitting. Thank you, Gigi Coghlan, for your hilariously irrelevant (and potentially irreverent) comment, which could not be more relevant (and dare I say reverent) in this context…
Three weeks ago I gave birth to the most amazing little boy! Parenting a newborn has ushered me into this crazy new world of making food with my boobs. It is so weird! I cannot get over how incredible the human body is. I also cannot get over how much time I spend in a 24 hour period sitting in one place with my shirt half off so a tiny human can suck on my nipple. Again, it is so weird!
Ziggy does something while he is eating or when he is wanting to eat that cracks me up. I will hold him close to my chest, he will be pressed up again my body, and instead of turning his head to line up with his spine and face my boob, he will swing his unstable neck 180 degrees so his face is looking away from my body. He will then grasp at the air with an open mouth looking for something to fill him up.
I’m like, dude, what’s up with that? Were you born yesterday?
Ziggy at one week old – Photo cred to Adam Gilbert
I am right there, holding him close, my body warm, my voice beckoning, my hands offering guidance, my nipple on his cheek, and still he fights against me. He resists. Instead of going where I direct him he turns his head away from me and towards the nothingness for sustenance. Sometimes, even after he has been eating for a while he will unlatch, pull back, and swing his little neck around in the wrong direction to suckle wide-mouthed into space.
As I sit here, bored and getting my chest milked, his comical little routine got me thinking about how his actions are so very much like our own interactions with God. The creator wants us tucked up against him, warm and cozy, and is offering food so we will never hunger and water so we will never thirst, and yet like infants we turn our precious faces towards the nothingness looking for nourishment.
Thankfully we have a God who cups our head in his hand and gently guides us back to the source of life if we will let him.
Here’s encouraging you today to stop sucking in empty air and to turn your face towards the one who made you. He will fill you up. I promise.
P.S. Do you think God has like, a bazillion nipples in order to feed us all? I wonder how many nipples God has…
“Jesus answered and said to her, ‘Everyone who drinks of this water will thirst again; but whoever drinks of the water that I will give him shall never thirst…’”