Mark D. Roberts

My daughter, Kara, was born in November 1994. Though she was a delightful baby most of the time, in her first weeks she did have a habit of crying uncontrollably in the early evening. This was not a major problem for my wife and me, except that Irvine Presbyterian Church wanted us to play the holy family in the Christmas Eve children’s pageant. The timing was perfectly wrong. We would be in front of a sanctuary full of people at precisely the time Kara would be bawling. Not exactly conducive to a celebrative Christmas Eve service! How would we be able to sing “Silent Night” with “the baby Jesus” howling away?

Nevertheless, my wife, Linda, and I agreed to give it a try. We formulated various contingency plans, fully expecting Kara to cry. Yet, when it was time for us to make our grand entrance, Kara was wide-awake but strangely silent. We stood before the congregation for many minutes, ready to try and comfort Kara when the inevitable crying began. But Kara rested in Linda’s arms, happy, peaceful, and miraculously quiet. In fact, she never once made a single peep while she played her crucial role as the baby Jesus. And, if you can believe it, that was the end of her evening crying episodes. She never again had them.