A friend of mine gave me a hug yesterday.
I was standing in the fellowship hall of my church, just waiting on all the lovely women to arrive for Coffee Break. She walked in the door, walked straight over to me, put her things down, and hugged me.
It surprised me.
This isn’t something we do every time we see each other. Occasionally there are hugs given out at Coffee Break so it isn’t like it is something weird. But it still surprised me.
The surprise wore off fast.
Like an instant melt, I felt all the cold loneliness and the tension of the last few days just melt away. Gone.
Like a sunrise after a dark night, light started spilling in. Creeping over the surface, chasing away shadows, driving the dark of night away.
I wrapped my arms around her too and she just held me tight while I choked, “I needed this.”
I’d had a rough 24 hours. I’m not going to explain why, but it was a day I didn’t care to repeat. Somehow, this wonderful friend could see this in me. I believe she listened to the Holy Spirit prompting her to offer me some acceptance and love.
Oh how we don’t know the battles of the women around us. Oh how we have lost sight of the pain of other people.
It takes eyes to really see it. It takes ears to listen closely enough to hear it. It takes a heart ready to break for other people. It takes actually listening to those nudges you feel to reach out to someone else.
And then all it takes is a hug. Bless the Lord, all it takes is an embrace.
In that moment I knew I was still loved. I knew people still saw me and cared about me. I knew that there was still good in the world – that there was still God in the world.
He promised that He would never leave us or forsake us. He promised that in this world we would have trouble. And He promised that He would be with us always, even to the very end.
Yesterday, I knew He kept His promise. And in the arms of a friend who offered a random hug I knew I had experienced the hands, the heart and the love of Christ.
Go love someone today. Offer an unasked for hug. Message someone on facebook with encouragement. Listen better. Talk less. Love more. Be Jesus to someone today.