I took off my shoes and stepped up into the orphanage. About 20 little dark-headed toddlers surrounded me, each child begging to be picked up. The Korean babies home in 1972 held over one hundred children up to the age of five. At six, the children were relocated to a home where they could attend school.
For several months, I slept above the children and during the days, I spent hours with them. All the babies slept on the floor. Some developed boils on their backs from not being turned over. Others were touched only when a diaper was changed or bottle put into their mouth. Two of the smallest babies lay still most of the time. Since they were so quiet, no one ever picked them up.
Measles came to the babies home. A few days later, I entered the room and the two smallest were missing. I asked where they had gone. My heart broke when I heard the babies had died. Later I learned that when sickness rampages through the orphanage, the ones who don’t get affection die first. Touching and holding are vital to a baby’s survival.
I would have taken every one of those babies home with me, given them all the affection I could, but I could only bring two to the U.S. at the time. Two very special Korean babies became my daughters.
Appropriate touch is important to all of us. So, remember to touch someone on the shoulder today or give them a hug. Let your children feel the warmth of a touch. Hold that baby!
Jesus knew touch was a unique way to show someone love.
Then Jesus put out his hand and touched him… Matthew 8:3