Bear Hugs and Birthday Wishes

I wanted to start by relaying a heart-felt thank you to all of my readers.  This blog has logged over 2,000 hits as of this week, which marks its first three months.  Please continue to pass it on!

I love it when my older son wakes up in the morning.  Well, I don't like it when it is at the crack of dawn.  But when I am sufficiently awake, I can hear his pitter-patter down the hallway to our room.  I get out of bed, and he gives me a big bear hug.  Everyday.  And for those of you with boys, you know that these opportunities dwindle the older that they get. 

Just as I enjoy it, he does too.  He doesn't want to start the day without his big hug, and then he is off to the races.  I am pretty sure he doesn't stop until he collapses at night.  But there is something in that moment of scooping him up into my arms.  It takes me back to when he was a baby.  And it reminds him of my unconditional love.

My younger son enjoys quick cuddles throughout the day.  But he becomes the most cuddly at night.  He puts his head on my shoulder as I sing him songs.  He becomes as still as a mouse as I rock him to soft melodies.  Then I place him in his crib with his plethora of stuffed animals.  Each one has a name, and each one is a crucial member of his sleeping arrangement - trust me.

Both of my sons experience comfort in different ways, but each needs to feel loved.  They experience my love through their respective rituals.  Their need for reassurance and care is no different from our own.  God has created us with a hole that only he can fill, and the rituals that we create space for in our daily lives have the opportunity to fill us too.

One of those rituals is prayer.  Now I am not talking about kneeling on the floor surrounded by quietness in a room flooded with sunshine.  That is well and good.  But this week I found myself having a poignant prayer while driving my kids to school with their chatter in the backseat.  I am reminded of one Mom who wrote a book entitled, "My Monastery Is A Minivan."  So true.

During that prayer, I was reminded of how God continues to care for me.  This past week was my birthday.  It was wonderful hearing from old and new friends.  But remembering friends' birthdays can be a tricky enterprise.  Sometimes we get too busy and unintentionally let the ball drop.  I know I could be more diligent.  Sometimes we fall off when there has not been the desired reciprocity in the past; after all, that's human nature.

But it is amazing to consider the fact that we worship a God who always remembers.  This God rejoices on our birthdays as only our Creator could.  And this God doesn't just reach out once a year, but every hour of every day, with a message of love and an invitation to friendship.  Whether his invitation is reciprocated or not, in fact even in the face of oppression on the cross, his invitation stands.

Whenever your birthday lies this year, remember your Creator will be the first one with balloons.  You were created special.  You were created with intention.  And whether or not you have reciprocated his invitation lately, realize that God gives unlike the world.  The offer stands.  Let your Creator hold YOU in his arms today.

Prayer:  Dear God, Thank you for creating each of us with intention.  Grow us in our ability to hear your voice and remember your heart-felt invitation.  We praise you that you are always calling, Great Comforter and Lover of Our Souls.  In Jesus' name, Amen.

"Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you.  I do not give to you as the world gives.  Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid" (John 14:27, NIV).


  1. I really enjoy this post of yours. Really inspiring one. Thanks anyway for sharing :)

    1. Thank you, truly, for sharing your feedback and encouragement, Hazel. God continues to minister to me through this message, and I am so happy that he is doing so for you too. Blessings!

  2. You know your projects stand out of the herd. There is something special about them. It seems to me all of them are really brilliant! Happy Birthday Wishes


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