Would You Like a Hug?

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“My little children, let us not love in word or in tongue, but in deed and in truth.” 1 John 3:18

“Would you like a hug?” I asked her as she sat on the park bench.

No matter I didn’t know the woman. I had met her just minutes before. I didn’t know her name. I knew virtually nothing about her. Other than that I had felt compelled to walk a different route than I had planned. That she seemed to be staring off into space. That she had a funny look on her face. Like she was caught somewhere between sadness and keeping her composure and not knowing what to do next in life not even in that next minute.

“Are you okay?” I had asked her boldly. The Lord has given me boldness. I am shy by nature. I could hide from the world forever. But it’s not my calling. My calling is to do the opposite. To go boldly, courageously, emphatically into all the world as an evangelist and write with the Gospel message and a passion beyond measure to help people not to just believe in Jesus – but to help them follow Him day by day.

She didn’t hesitate to share with me a little piece of her story. And she acquiesced immediately to the offer for a hug. We hugged briefly and chatted briefly. And I had just enough time from start to finish to show her she was loved, cared for, and to give her a Gospel tract including my personal story and my contact information. I told her she could reach out if she liked. And off I went with my wheelchair dogs. To wherever and to whomever God would lead me next. And off she went to deal with what she faced – with a little bit of love and a little hug to take with her. And with the Gospel message that Jesus Christ is Lord and Savior and redeemer and healer and what and whom we need above all else for now and eternity.

We’re living in a hurting, desperate world, friend, and times are getting tougher for many. How much of a sacrifice is it in the grand scheme of things to share our time, Christ’s love, the Gospel message, a hug, a smile, a listening ear, words of encouragement, to point people to Christ, to show His mercy and kindness and compassion, to be a bridge between His redeeming love and a person’s hurting heart?

But how often are we too caught up in ourselves and our own little lives to even notice when a stranger, or even a friend, or family member, could use a bit of His love?

Please for Christ’s sake let’s not miss our opportunities to love Him and others in His name and above all else to proclaim the Gospel message far and wide!

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