Of Tears, Sorrow, and Hugs


For the one who needs a hug. This is an old memory from 2014.

Hiding in Plain Sight

I ran to the store and turned down an aisle with my cart and there he was, moving behind his own cart. He was there, but not really, walking but only in slow motion, and then when he saw me, our eyes met and he wept – right there in the store.

I hugged him, knowing the hug wasn’t the answer but only the comfort for him in his sad and sorrowful time. He lost his son to an early physical death last week, and the love he has/had for his son is fresh, painful and the loss was consuming him. They were very close.

Sharing in Plain Sight

He told me of the funeral, of the details and talking about his son cut through him, his emotions were raw, and he looked at me, “I’ve been struggling for sometime in my faith, and I haven’t let anyone know this, and then here you are, and I’m telling you how broken I am. You pop around the corner and you stop … and you listen, and you’ve cried with me in public, and now you’ve hugged me twice.”

I went on talk to him about his faith, about God, about the love Christ has for us, and did my best to encourage him, and then, I asked what it is that he struggled with in regard to his faith, and his tears fell, and he said, “I know that I need to surrender everything to God. Not just pieces of my life, but everything.”

He shared nuggets of his journey as a Christian, of the doubt, the worry, the wishing for more, the questions, and then he said, “You know, it’s like God has me, but I won’t let go of things. It’s like he’s telling me give him my worry and anxiety.”

Surrendering in Plain Sight

After we talked, he touched my arm, “You know, I am ready to surrender everything to Christ. I’m ready to give Christ my sadness, my loss, my heart, all of me.”

He held his head up a little higher, and as he walked away, he said, “Thank you for stopping to listen.”

The odd thing is he had no idea how he gave me hope, because he was real with God. Watching his face change from despair to hope revealed how God touched him right there in the aisle by all the medicines.

Yes, God was the truest medicine needed, and God was at the store, listening to my friend. And holding him in His arms! 

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