Is there anything better in the whole wide world than a babies smile?  Can any other single thing light up a person's day like a toothless, bubbly grin from a chubby cheeked little four month old?

As I write this, lying on my bed with my laptop open, my little chubby-cheeked man is curled up next to me, sucking on his fingers, making baby sounds.  He's so warm and new, so soft and smooth, that I hardly know what to do sometimes.

The power of a baby - something I think this world forgets.  The movie Children of Men captured this power with such reverence.  If you haven't seen the movie, I'll just tell you this - a baby enters into a world that has not seen a baby in almost 20 years.  It is a world of despair and hopelessness, and this child makes everyone stop and stare in awe and reverence.  But all babies do that for the world.

On a recent trip, I took my then three-month-old with me.  Everywhere we went, in restaurants, the airport, and hotel elevators, people stopped, looked, and smiled, asked how old he was, tried to make him smile, and generally seemed to enjoy his very presence.  As I was holding him on my shoulder in the airport, a man passed by us talking on his cell phone and I heard him say to whoever he was talking to "I'm passing the sweetest little baby right now..."

Children seem to know instinctively that babies are marvelous creatures.  Adults hear "I'm pregnant" and they see dirty diapers, spit-up, and can hear the crying.  Children though, hear that someone is going to have a baby and they just get excited.  When I was 15, my mother announced to my four siblings and me that she was pregnant.  We were jumping with joy, because babies are so great!  But when the adults in our world heard about this miracle, most of them wanted to know if my parents knew how babies were made.  Such cynicism around such an amazing gift still astounds me.

Babies are the natural progression of the love between man and woman (you know - fall in love, get married, make babies).  And as my husband is fond of saying when the subject of how many kids we plan to have comes up, "Practice, practice, practice."  And then enjoy the life, the life looking back at me with enormous baby blue eyes, a visual representation of the love that God has for all of us.  I'm going to give that little life a kiss right now.

Copyright 2009 Katherine Barron