When we were children, we all longed for the tenderness of a parent, to feel the loving arms of mum or dad around us when we fell, to hear a kind word when we were ill or hurting. But as we grew into adulthood and got out into the world, perhaps the gentle words that we were used to gave place to harsher ones. And yet, how much we all still need the tenderness that reminds us of our innocent, childlike self, and how greatly the whole world would benefit from a little more of it.
Today tenderness seems to be in short supply. It is too often thought to be a weakness rather than a strength, and not a desirable quality if we are to be successful and get ahead in the workplace, in business, and in other areas of life. And yet, we have the example of Christ Jesus. How absolutely loving and gentle he was. Again and again, he reassured those who were suffering and full of fear, “Be not afraid.”
What strength lay behind those loving, healing words. Through these examples of Jesus’ humanity, we understand Christ, his divine nature, and the spirit of Love so necessary in healing the sick and sorrowing. Such tenderness as Christ Jesus expressed is the manifestation of divine Love, and as a quality of the one God, or divine Spirit, it has behind it strength. Mary Baker Eddy writes in Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures, “Tenderness accompanies all the might imparted by Spirit” (p. 514).