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The Value of a Hug

Devotional Thoughts for our Day:

11  No, the LORD’s delight is in those who fear him, those who put their hope in his unfailing love. Psalm 147:11 (NLT2)

On the day of the Innocents12 [Martin Luther said], “If God were to withhold our necessities from us for a year, what a cry there would be throughout the world! But now that he lavishes them upon us we’re all ungrateful, and there is no one who gives thanks.”

COVID has shown us, very clearly, what we’ve taken for granted. Simple things that were part of our lives, that we have had to not engage in, or at least we were supposed to to avoid.

Among those things are hugs (and strong firm handshakes for those who are afraid of hugs)

There is something about them that go far beyond the physical contact. It can bring comfort, peace, the assurance that we are not alone. It can be the hug given to those who grieve, the hug given joy in celebration of a victory, the hiug given to someone you haven’t seen for a while. Even the holding the hand of someone who has been broken by life….as you silently pray for them.

We’ve lost this necessity for a year, and its loss is visible.

Yet as social distancing becomes less a thing, as people return to churches, as life begins anew, hugs and handshakes and contact will come back into play.

But will we continue to appreciate them?

During this last year, God has been faithful, and we’ve been able to put our trust in Him. He has sustained us trhough things we could not have imagined. He has been our hope thourgh this all, for everything else was stripped away, or simply was a shadow of what it was in the past.

And so we trust in Him….in His unfailing love.

And as we receive His body to eat, His blood to drink, in awe consider the closeness and contact He desires with you!..

Martin Luther, Luther’s Works, Vol. 54: Table Talk, ed. Jaroslav Jan Pelikan, Hilton C. Oswald, and Helmut T. Lehmann, vol. 54 (Philadelphia: Fortress Press, 1999), 131.

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