Lila may be my favorite character in this group of stories. For me, Lila personifies those who Jesus spoke of in Matthew when he said:
“Amen, I say to you, unless you turn and become like children, you will not enter the kingdom of heaven. Whoever humbles himself like this child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven. And whoever receives one child such as this in my name receives me.”
Lila is simple and poor, but she is the only one to reach out to the Holy Family in their need and bring them to her only refuge, the cave she shares with her beloved animals. And when she realizes that the child born that night is special, she doesn’t keep it to herself but shows great courage to find her brother and bring him back so that he, too, can have the ‘inside peace’ that she feels.
I hope this Christmas, we can all be like Lila — childlike in our love and generosity–so that when Jesus asks to come into out hearts we will welcome him.
You can read Lila’s story in Gaze Upon Jesus, Experiencing Christ’s Childhood Through the Eyes of Women. Check out the book bundle available at WINE: Women in the New Evangelization and join the book club conversation on the blog or WINE Book Clubs Facebook page.