Hugged Back

Come close to God, and God will come close to you. James 4:8a

It was a great afternoon with my four kids and my oldest daughters fiancé as we enjoyed dinner and some shopping together. After dinner we meandered in and out some of the stores in the mall, when my middle daughter, who I call may “blond haired blue eyed angel,” reached over and put her arm around me. Not a hard squeeze, but certainly warm enough that I could feel my eyes begin water. It was just one of those special moments that you don’t want to end and where nothing needs to be said with words. Her embrace said it all and I knew she was letting me know, in the sweetest of ways, how much she loved me and was enjoying our time together.

The next day I was running some errands around town and stopped by a department store, and under my breath I was praising the Father. It was something I had been doing a lot lately. Some would call it “practicing His presence,” but to me it was something less intentional and more spontaneous. My heart had been overflowing as of late and I just found myself worshiping and praising Him without end out of a heart of overflowing gratitude. David said in Psalm 34:1, “I will bless the Lord at all times; His praise shall continually be in my mouth.”

As I have often experienced in moments like these I felt waves of love and peace wash over me. I know we’re told “not to live by our feelings” when it comes to the “things of God,” but God gave us feelings, and I believe that is certainly one of the ways He communicates with us. In that moment I asked Him under my breath, “Father what is that?” In that “Still small voice” I heard, “It’s me hugging you back.” As I thought about it more later, I felt He was telling me that there is no way He would let me love on Him like that without loving on me back.

It really only makes since. Our communication with the Father was never meant to be a one-way monolog, but a back and forth dialog. Our Heavenly Father wants to talk back to us, communicate with us and even love on us, even more than we “need” to do those things to Him. So let me encourage you today, in spite of your current circumstance or situation, “love on the Father” and I promise you, He’ll hug you back.

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