This morning, instead of my regular Bible study small group and lecture, I got to volunteer in the under two children’s program. They put me with the little ones because my own 2-4 year old is still adjusting, and he would have had a tougher time with me being in his class than not. So they say. I was glad to do it, though.
And even though there was much fussing and crying for the first half hour or so (from the babies, not me), I didn’t mind at all. I guess it’s different when it’s not your kid. The crying doesn’t cut you to the very soul as it does when it’s your own. I walked with him, gave him part of a bottle that ended up spit up down the back of my shirt, and he eventually went to sleep with the help of one of the teachers. He was so sweet, he’d calm down and almost nod off on my shoulder or in my arms, but then suddenly he’d look at my face and I could just read that look of, “you’re still not my mommy” on his face. He had a tough time. But the rest of them, so much fun.
There were four “older” babies, probably around a year or so, who were just so intrigued by every game and song we played. They listened to the stories with interest and no one got hurt. I even got to read one of the books toward the end. I’ve never been around that many kids before, and granted, there was help, and I was just sort of along for the ride, but I could really see myself doing this on a more regular basis. And the leaders saw it, too.
They have been praying and searching for more teachers for their program, and in all honesty, I’d probably rather do that than the actual Bible reading and questions and notes and lectures. We still give the kids the short version of the story, the theme to take away, and it’s so fun to see them participate in everything. To to participate myself. And it’s not all religious, either. We sang “Wheels on the Bus,” “Old MacDonald,” “If You’re Happy and You Know It,” and “The Itsy Bitsy Spider.”
Maybe this was why I started going to Bible Study. Because they needed me. And this opportunity to go and be a helper to the kids and teachers of the program might reveal more to me about where my work should be.
In a strange juxtaposition, today I was called in response to a resume I submitted for a related position. Unfortunately, my availability doesn’t quite match their need. But the interviewer made it clear that from the information I’d provided, I sounded like a great match if the other part ever changed. Which it might. You never know. In the meantime, I’m trying to pray and listen, to trust that I will eventually find what it is I am meant to do or be.
I should also note that if I expected at all for this volunteer experience to help bring down the baby fever, it totally backfired.