Signposts: Daily Devotions

Thursday, August 7

But while he was yet at a distance, his father saw him and had compassion, and ran and embraced him and kissed him. And the son said to him, “Father, I have sinned against heaven and before you; I am no longer worthy to be called your son.” But the father said to his servants, “Bring quickly the best robe, and put it on him; and put a ring on his hand, and shoes on his feet; and bring the fatted calf and kill it, and let us eat and make merry; for this my son was dead, and is alive again; he was lost, and is found.” And they began to make merry.
—Luke 15:20-24

When was the last time someone really gave you a hug? Not a quick, “hi-how-are-you” embrace, but a hug. A good, long-lasting expression of just how wonderful, how terrific, how absolutely valuable you are as a human being?

Such moments are moments of grace. They happen because another human being knows how loved she is by God. For whatever reason, she has experienced the value of life and is able to convey that love and care to others.

In the willingness of such a companion to share herself with us, we experience the incarnate word of God. The word has been “spoken” within our friend, and knowing that amazing love, she became willing to share it with us. By recognizing the holy voice, she was able to give it away in the simple embrace of companionship.

All of us are called to this holy hug! Experiencing the love of God in Christ, we are to share the word that we hear within, and let it go forth as a testimony to the love of God in Christ.

Knowing how loved we are, we are to proclaim that same Good News to all people—“you are terrific, loved, beautiful.”

So, find someone and give them a hug. A real hug! And as you do, remember how wonderful it is to be held, to be held by God, and to let that love surround you in the arms of another.

Amazing—as you give it away, it returns to you tenfold.

You hold me in your arms each day God, even when I don’t feel it. As I walk with you today, help me discover how loved I am and help me remembers to share that love with those around me. Amen.

The Signposts for August are written by Michael Sullivan and originally appeared on explorefaith in 2006.